26 June 2017

Sweden’s Double Decade for Roma Inclusion: An Examination of Education Policy in Context

Nafsika Alexiadou & Anders Norberg

This recently published article -- a part of European Education's 2017 special issue (Vol 49, Issue 1) on "A Decade of Roma Inclusion" edited by Christian Brüggemann & Eben Friedman -- analyzes the Swedish Strategy for Roma Inclusion. Drawing on interviews and documentary materials produced around the Strategy by official sources and Roma organizations, the authors describe its background, rationale, and evolution, as well as the rifts it has revealed around the issues of minority representation and the framing of inclusion. The article describes the Strategy as a framework for education policy, aligned with the European Framework for Roma integration, and discuss it in relation to issues of representation, inclusion, and policy formation. IT argue that, at the discursive level, the Strategy has engaged positively with the politics of Roma inclusion and has introduced a number of new issues in the public debate. However, at the same time it has given rise to policy tensions that reflect inadequate representation of and discussions with Roma stakeholders. For policy makers this has presented opportunities to rethink the design of the Strategy and to opt for an open final text that allows for a more versatile and flexible set of policy options to emerge at the local level.

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