Perfect Match? The Practice Ecology of a Labor Market Initiative for Refugees




Gender, Ethnicity, Age and Diversity, Identity, Meaning & Culture, Labor Market Institutions & Social Partners, Organization & Management


The article investigates the case of a Danish labor market initiative for refugees with a professional engineering background. The ambition is to identify the causes and contextual elements that are active in shaping labor market initiatives directed at groups of refugees. Contemporary theories of practice are used to investigate the structures that enable, constrain, and channel the activities related to the initiative. The discussion focuses on the practice of the initiative in order to analyze ways in which activities are organized in the site. Furthermore, it sets out to investigate how the practices exist and are interconnected in ecological arrangements where practice architectures hold one another in place. The theoretical conceptualization in terms of practice, practices, practice architectures, and practice ecologies helps to explain how a seemingly ideal initiative turned out to have a little impact in bringing the refugee engineers closer to employment on the Danish labor market.

Author Biographies

Sara Kristine Gløjmar Berthou, The Danish Society of Engineers


PhD. Project Manager.

Anders Buch, Aalborg University Copenhagen


Professor. E-mail:




How to Cite

Berthou, S. K. G., & Buch, A. (2018). Perfect Match? The Practice Ecology of a Labor Market Initiative for Refugees. Nordic Journal of Working Life Studies, 8(S4), 27–46.