Recruitment, Socialisation and Representation in
Public Administration. The Case of Language and Culture for Diversity in
Public Organisations

Project leader

Funding source

Riksbankens Jubileumsfond (RJ)

Project Details

Start date: 01/01/2008
End date: 31/12/2012
Funding: 2050000 SEK


The project takes as its starting point the concept of representation in relation to public administration. Coping with globalisation and multilingualism in Sweden today, national administrative bodies face another composition of the citizenry it is supposed to serve, and the issue of representation is given a new dimension.

The second starting point is the language policy adopted by Parliament in 2005 and the use of language as a resource for identity, socialisation and recruitment in public administration. The macro context constitutes the background for the micro cases of professional interaction in the workplace, which illuminate how skill and competence in using the national language as a tool is introduced in practice.

The cases we use come from a new complementary course in Public Administration especially designed for academics with a foreign background who aspire to work in the national agencies and ministries.

The project makes explicit links to theoretical discourses on diversity, representation and language policy and also includes international empirical comparisons with countries that have longer experience of ethnic diversity and multilingual demands in public administration. Cultural diversity is an expressed aim by the government at the same time as competence and skill is supposed to be the bases for recruitment. How do they go together and is specialised education a possible route towards progress?

Last updated on 2017-29-03 at 17:13