Rhetoric used in youth policies aiming to improve well-being often target vulnerable groups of people, but it can disguise the actual situation of marginalized groups, such as young people of ethnic minorities, and those having disabilities or learning difficulties. Their statuses are problematic in many fields of society.

According to recent studies concerning Finland, most young people are content with their lives and their trust in society and service system is on high level (Gromada et al. 2020). However, research data can hide the problems of those, whose ability to function is lower than that of an average young person. They are often absent from official statistics and research that represent young people in general. Statuses of marginalized young people in society vary a lot in different countries, and is many times dependent of supporting structures and mechanisms in the society, such as family network, supporting services and youth and employment policies.

We have the privilege to welcome Dr. Simon Prideaux, Associate Professor on Sociology, Social Welfare and Crime at the University of Leeds, United Kingdom and PhD Candidate Claudia Radiven, to participate in a workshop on January 15th 2021, arranged by South Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences, University of Helsinki and Finnish Society for Disability Research.

Dr. Simon Prideaux has an extensive career as a researcher on issues of social policy and welfare. His main area of expertise are policy perceptions of disabled people. Claudia Radiven is a PhD Candidate at the School of Sociology and Social Policy and the School of Arabic, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies. Her main area of expertise are ethnic minorities and institutional racism.

Our guests will lecture on the position of marginalized groups of young people in United Kingdom in the light of new economic circumstances affected by corona pandemic. They will open up conversation on the regurgitation of policies for youth in general to counter the effects of the current pandemic. At the end, they will ask why policies for ethnic minorities, the disabled and autistic are conspicuously absent from recent UK economic updates, what should be put in place and why.

We invite researchers to join the workshop and actively participate in the discussion. Some researchers are prepared to present their research papers during the workshop tackling these or other relevant issues.

Timetable of the event:

8.30 – 8.40 GMT: Opening words (Dr. Susan Eriksson, South Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences)

8.40- 9.10: Boris and Rishi`s “Kickstart” for the UK Economy: Same Old, Same Old Youth Employment Policies? (Dr. Simon Prideaux and Claudia Radiven, University of Leeds)

9.10.- 10.00: Discussion

10.00-10.30: Coffee Break

10.30 – 11.30: Paper presentations

11.30-12.00: Discussion and closing event


Register to the event by sending an e-mail to susan.eriksson@xamk.fi no later than January 8th 2021.

Workshop will be online via Zoom, and it´s free of charge. We send more information later concerning practical arrangements to those registered, including practical information concerning Zoom platform and links.


We warmly wish to see you in January!



Gromada, Anna; Rees, Gwyther; Chzhen, Yekaterina (2020). Worlds of Influence: Understanding What Shapes Child Well-being in Rich Countries, no. 16, UNICEF Office of Research – Innocenti, Florence.