Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

Sociology and Social Policy

Ethnic differences in education and diverging prospects for urban youth in an enlarged Europe

March 2008 - March 2011

Ethnic differences in education and diverging prospects for urban youth in an enlarged Europe: a comparative investigation into ethnically diverse communities with second-generation migrants and Roma.

The research project is studying how ethnic differences in education contribute to the prospects for minority ethnic youth and their peers in urban settings in Western, Central and Eastern Europe.

This study explores, through cross-national analysis, how far existing educational policies, practices and experiences, in markedly different welfare regimes, protect minority ethnic youth against marginalisation and social exclusion.

Despite great variations in economic development and welfare arrangements, recent developments seem to lead to some similar consequences for certain groups of second or third generation migrants in the Western half of the continent and for Roma in Central and Eastern Europe.

The project will critically examine the role of education in the processes of 'minoritisation'. In ethnically diverse urban communities, schools often become targets for locally organised political struggles shaped by a broader political and civic culture of ethnic mobilisation.

This study will investigate how schools operate in their roles of socialisation and knowledge distribution, and how they influence young people's identity formation.

The project will also explore how schools contribute to reducing, maintaining, or deepening inequalities in young people's access to the labour market, further education and training, and also to different domains of social, cultural, and political participation.

The results of macro-level investigations, a comparative survey and multi-faceted field research in local settings will provide rich datasets for intra- and cross-country comparisons and evidence-based policy making.

Project Publications

Working Paper 2, Education in the UK , by Gary Fry, Shona Hunter, Ian Law, Audrey Osler, Sarah Swann, Rodanthi Tzanelli and Fiona Williams, Leeds: University of Leeds, 2008.

Working Paper 3, Ethnic Relations in the UK, by Ian Law, Shona Hunter, Audrey Osler, Sarah Swann, Rodanthi Tzanelli and Fiona Williams, Leeds: University of Leeds, 2008.

Working Paper 4, Comparative Ethnic Relations, by Ian Law, Michal Nekorjak and Ondrej Daniel (Czech Republic) and Roza Vajda (Hungary)

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