Participatory Action Research for Positive Change

Madelein Nienkemper

Madelein NienkemperBeing a coordinator of the Work Integration Project has been a real rollercoaster for me, with a lot of ups and downs, but has learned me a lot about planning and organizing my own Action Research Project.

In 2013 I moved to Sweden to study a master program in global studies at Lund University. For my master thesis I interviewed asylum seekers in Sweden about their experiences with the Swedish asylum system. One of the things that came up several times was how hard it is to start working. Even though it is encouraged by the government to be financially independent, asylum seekers face a lot of bureaucratic obstacles that make it almost impossible to get a job. The willpower they show to start a new life in Sweden and build a future for their children has motivated me to start the Work Integration Project.

With the increasing globalization and urbanization, community building becomes is ever so important, not only in developing countries. In the future I hope to be able to use the new skills I learned as an Action Researcher to strengthen communities in fast changing societies.