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Soc. Sci., Volume 10, Issue 4 (April 2021) – 32 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): The COVID-19 pandemic has had devastating effects on the sports industry, which, pre-pandemic, was worth four trillion US dollars. One third of the world’s gyms have closed down temporarily, which puts a strain on fitness professions. Group fitness instruction essentially relies on coming together physically to exercise. Taking a social constructionist approach, this paper explores, through online focus group discussions with Les Mills certified trainers from different countries, the ways in which group fitness instructors have navigated their professional identities amid social distancing. The study indicates that instructors are currently attempting to reinvent themselves as motivators—animating participants to stay active at home through online streaming services—while also continuing their own personal fitness journeys—waging a war against the virus by strengthening their physiques. View this paper.
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Article
Between Social Protests and a Global Pandemic: Working Transitions under the Economic Effects of COVID-19
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 145; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040145 - 20 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2350
Abstract
Emerging research on the economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic draws attention to the labor effects of the crisis in the Global South. Developing countries show high levels of labor informality, where most workers cannot work from home and depend on daily income. [...] Read more.
Emerging research on the economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic draws attention to the labor effects of the crisis in the Global South. Developing countries show high levels of labor informality, where most workers cannot work from home and depend on daily income. In addition, the scarce and late state aid makes it difficult for workers to cope with the economic hardships caused by the pandemic. This research explores the employment trajectories of workers throughout the ongoing pandemic in Chile: a neoliberal country with a strong male breadwinner culture and high levels of income inequality. Using longitudinal non-probabilistic data for Chilean employment, this study finds that men lost their jobs to a lesser extent and returned to the labor market faster than women. Likewise, male workers with family (with a partner and young children) remained employed in a higher proportion than female workers with family, and most of these women shifted from employment into care work. The existing literature already pointed out how economic crises can have adverse effects on progress towards gender equality, and the current economic crisis seems to be no exception. Labor informality and low-skilled jobs were highly related to unemployment during the first months of COVID in Chile. These are important variables in a developing economy such as Chile, where around one-third of the population works under these conditions. This article concludes by reflecting on the importance of addressing the present crisis and future economic recovery with a gender perspective. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Family, Work and Welfare: A Gender Lens on COVID-19)
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Article
Climate Crises and the Creation of ‘Undeserving’ Victims
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 144; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040144 - 19 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1767
Abstract
This paper explores how advanced liberal democracies respond to climate migrants in ways that reflect colonial logics and practices. With a focus on the Pacific, it reflects on three constructions of climate crisis victims. First, as savages—those incapable of adapting or thriving under [...] Read more.
This paper explores how advanced liberal democracies respond to climate migrants in ways that reflect colonial logics and practices. With a focus on the Pacific, it reflects on three constructions of climate crisis victims. First, as savages—those incapable of adapting or thriving under catastrophic environmental threats and who need to be saved by ‘the West’. Secondly, as threats—the hordes who will threaten white civilization and who must be sorted, excluded, detained and deported. Thirdly, as ‘non-ideal’ victims—those undeserving of full legal protections but who may survive under hostile conditions in receiving states. These political and policy responses create systemic harms and injustice for those who struggle under or must flee environmental degradation, and they function to ensure that those most to blame for climate crises are prioritized as having least responsibility to take action. The paper concludes with consideration of socially just responses to those most affected from climate harms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Human Rights and Displaced People in Exceptional Times)
Article
“Race”, Belonging and Emancipation: Trajectories and Views of the Daughters of Western Africa in Spain
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 143; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040143 - 16 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1429
Abstract
Young Spanish Black people born to migrant parents continue to be either invisible or problematized in public discourses, which project a monocultural and phenotypically homogeneous Europe. Research in countries with a long immigration history has shown that in the process of othering minorities, [...] Read more.
Young Spanish Black people born to migrant parents continue to be either invisible or problematized in public discourses, which project a monocultural and phenotypically homogeneous Europe. Research in countries with a long immigration history has shown that in the process of othering minorities, gender ideologies emerge as ethnic boundaries and feed the paternalistic treatment of women while accusing their families and communities of harming them through atavistic traditions. However, little research has focused on girls’ and young women from West African immigration and Muslim tradition in Spain, a country where they represent the first “second generation”. In order to gain a deeper insight into their processes and views, this paper describes and analyses the educational trajectories and transitions to adult life of a group of young women with these backgrounds who participated in a multilevel and narrative ethnography developed in the framework of a longitudinal and comparative project on the risk of Early Leaving of Education and Training in Europe (ELET). In the light of the conceptual contributions of the politics of belonging and intersectionality, the responsibilities regarding the conditions for gaining independence are relocated while assessing the role of the school in the processes of social mobility and the development of egalitarian aspirations in the labor market and in the family environment. The findings show how the limits encountered by these young women in their trajectories to an independent adult life are mainly produced by processes of racialization conditioned by class and gender, ironically in key spaces of social inclusion such as schools and the labor market rather than, or mainly by, an ethnic community that subjugates them. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Racialized Citizenship in Superdiverse Europe)
Article
The Need to Act: Incest as a Crime Given Low Priority—A View with India as an Example
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 142; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040142 - 16 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1366
Abstract
Background: Incest is a form of sexual activity that occurs within family or kinship systems. It is prohibited by religion and law in most countries as well as by social mores or taboos. Data from various parts of the world indicate, however, that [...] Read more.
Background: Incest is a form of sexual activity that occurs within family or kinship systems. It is prohibited by religion and law in most countries as well as by social mores or taboos. Data from various parts of the world indicate, however, that it appears to be a relatively common event, although there is reason to believe that the actual frequency is unknown. Most available data focus upon children as victims, although we note that incest also occurs between adult family members. Methods: A systematic review was performed using PRISMA guidelines. With a focus upon India, the search tools of Academic Search Complete, Google Scholar and PUBMED were used to identify articles that legally defined incest; frequency; barriers to disclosure; the dynamics of incest and social norms. Results: The available data were very limited, making a systematic review unachievable within the narrow confines of incest. Conclusions: The literature is sparse. This led to a discussion of definitional issues; barriers to disclosure; and challenges with measuring the problem of incest and the impact of social norms. Questions of law and efforts at reform were also considered. The article considers what steps might be appropriate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Family Studies)
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Article
Mothers’ Accounts of Attending to Educational and Everyday Needs of Their Children at Home during COVID-19: The Case of the UAE
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 141; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040141 - 15 Apr 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1841
Abstract
From March 2020 until July 2020, the UAE implemented mandatory distance learning due to COVID-19, which meant that children had to continue their learning remotely at home. Though schools concerted exemplary efforts to ensure that children received all that was necessary through advanced [...] Read more.
From March 2020 until July 2020, the UAE implemented mandatory distance learning due to COVID-19, which meant that children had to continue their learning remotely at home. Though schools concerted exemplary efforts to ensure that children received all that was necessary through advanced technology platforms and interfaces, the duty of ensuring that children continued to engage in successful learning fell solely on parents. This paper is based on a self-report study conducted during this first period of distance learning where parents were invited to anonymously complete a survey and then be interviewed. The paper relies on interviews as its main data source. Interview transcripts once transcribed were thematically analysed. One recurring theme in the data was gender differences in domestic and other duties as well as attending to the educational needs of children. Mothers, irrespective of cultural or educational background, disproportionately seemed to be the caretakers of the home and of children’s educational needs. Mothers spoke of their mental health concerns, pressures of time management, and negative effects on their own work. This paper makes an original contribution by exploring parental experiences of emergency remote learning and what these reflect about parental ethnotheories in the UAE. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Family, Work and Welfare: A Gender Lens on COVID-19)
Article
Direct Provision, Rights and Everyday Life for Asylum Seekers in Ireland during COVID-19
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 140; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040140 - 15 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2661
Abstract
This article considers the impact of COVID-19 on international protection applicants in the Irish asylum system. It presents a critical reflection on the failings of direct provision and how the experience of COVID-19 has further heightened the issues at stake for asylum seekers [...] Read more.
This article considers the impact of COVID-19 on international protection applicants in the Irish asylum system. It presents a critical reflection on the failings of direct provision and how the experience of COVID-19 has further heightened the issues at stake for asylum seekers and refugees living in Ireland. In Ireland, international protection applicants are detained in a system of institutionalized living called direct provision where they must remain until they receive status. Direct provision centres offer substandard accommodation and are often overcrowded. During the pandemic, many asylum seekers could not effectively socially isolate, so many centres experienced COVID-19 outbreaks. This article examines these experiences and joins a community of scholars calling for the urgent end to the system of direct provision. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Human Rights and Displaced People in Exceptional Times)
Article
Behind the Curtain of the Border Spectacle: Introducing ‘Illegal’ Movement and Racialized Profiling in the West African Region
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 139; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040139 - 15 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2069
Abstract
The introduction of ‘illegal’ migration in West African countries represented a major conceptual policy shift for societies that were historically characterized by intra-regional free movement. However, this transformation went along with severe allegations of racialized profiling of undocumented migrants in many West African [...] Read more.
The introduction of ‘illegal’ migration in West African countries represented a major conceptual policy shift for societies that were historically characterized by intra-regional free movement. However, this transformation went along with severe allegations of racialized profiling of undocumented migrants in many West African societies. De Genova’s concept of the ‘border spectacle’ describes how the presumed ‘illegality’ of migrants is made spectacularly visible in Europe, thus producing a criminalized and racialized portrayal of migrants. Nonetheless, this work argues that today’s illegalization through a racialized representation of migrants has been extended beyond Europe’s boundaries and behind the spectacle’s curtain towards countries of migration origin. Drawing on the cases of Mauritania and Mali, this paper considers their fundamentally opposite reaction to the introduction of ‘irregular’ movement and illustrates the inherent problematics of transferring the figure of a racialized migrant into the West African region. Particularly successful in countries with a history of ethnic conflicts, this process essentially externalized European border practices of racialized profiling. On the contrary, this analysis concludes that the presence of established patterns of regional movement and cross-border habits made it undesirable to either introduce the policy concept of ‘illegal’ migration or to adopt its potentially racialized portrayal. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Racialized Citizenship in Superdiverse Europe)
Article
Factors Influencing Urban Livability in Seoul, Korea: Urban Environmental Satisfaction and Neighborhood Relations
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 138; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040138 - 14 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1466
Abstract
This study examines the correlations between urban environmental satisfaction, neighborhood relations, and livability. Previous studies on livability have insufficiently dealt with urban environments and neighborhood relations and have failed to conduct an integrated analysis that considers the causal relationships between these factors. To [...] Read more.
This study examines the correlations between urban environmental satisfaction, neighborhood relations, and livability. Previous studies on livability have insufficiently dealt with urban environments and neighborhood relations and have failed to conduct an integrated analysis that considers the causal relationships between these factors. To fill these knowledge gaps, this study includes urban environmental satisfaction and neighborhood relations as factors affecting livability. Moreover, this study verified the mediating effect of neighborhood relations between urban environmental satisfaction and livability. Online surveys were carried out with 750 residents in Seoul, South Korea, and the structural equation model (SEM) was employed. The results indicated that a higher level of urban environmental satisfaction affected livability positively. In particular, the accessibility had the greatest effect on livability. In addition, neighborhood relations had a mediating effect on the pleasantness and safety of urban environments. Today, many developing countries are undergoing rapid urbanization, as Seoul has experienced in the past. However, this can cause a number of simultaneous side effects, which lower livability. Furthermore, this leads to population decline which might hinder urban sustainability. Therefore, this study suggests important policy implications for achieving urban sustainability by improving livability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Community and Urban Sociology)
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Article
Anti-Racism in Europe: An Intersectional Approach to the Discourse on Empowerment through the EU Anti-Racism Action Plan 2020–2025
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 137; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040137 - 14 Apr 2021
Viewed by 1932
Abstract
Anti-racism in Europe operates in political, policy, and civic spaces, in which organizations try to counter racial discrimination and violence. This paper applies a textual analysis to the European discourse of the transnationally connected anti-racism movement that shaped the European Union (henceforth EU) [...] Read more.
Anti-racism in Europe operates in political, policy, and civic spaces, in which organizations try to counter racial discrimination and violence. This paper applies a textual analysis to the European discourse of the transnationally connected anti-racism movement that shaped the European Union (henceforth EU) anti-racism action plan 2020–2025. The plan seeks to address structural racism in the EU through an intersectional lens. Alana Lentin, however, cautions that the structuring principles of anti-racism approaches can obscure “irrefutable reciprocity between racism and the modern nation-state”. Against the backdrop of a critique intersectionality mainstreaming in global anti-racist movements, this paper draws on Kimberly Crenshaw’s concept of intersectionality to critically examine the practices outlined in the EU anti-racism action plan to understand (1) the extent to which the EU anti-racism action addresses the historical baggage of European imperialism, (2) the influence of transnational anti-racism organizations such as the European Network Against Racism (henceforth ENAR) in reinforcing universalisms about notions of humanity in anti-racism activism through language and (3) the limitations that the EU anti-racism action plan poses for the empowerment of racially marginalized groups of people. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Racialized Citizenship in Superdiverse Europe)
Article
Green Entrepreneurial Orientation and Green Innovation in Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs)
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 136; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040136 - 13 Apr 2021
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 2295
Abstract
Since environmental issues are becoming an integral part of business performances, policymakers and managers have started recognizing the importance of green innovation towards sustainable business performances. The role of the automotive parts industry is crucial in minimizing environmental degradation and promoting sustainable development. [...] Read more.
Since environmental issues are becoming an integral part of business performances, policymakers and managers have started recognizing the importance of green innovation towards sustainable business performances. The role of the automotive parts industry is crucial in minimizing environmental degradation and promoting sustainable development. Yet few studies have focused on the connection between green entrepreneurial orientation and green innovation that may affect small and medium enterprise (SME) business performance. Therefore, this study aims to analyze the influence of green entrepreneurial orientation on green innovations, and its effects on sustainable business performances in the automotive parts industry in Thailand. The sample consists of 226 SMEs in the automotive parts industry in Thailand. The partial least square method (PLS-SEM) has been used for the analysis of data. The results of the study show that green innovations have the strongest influence on economic and environmental performances. This study contributes to resource-based view theory by incorporating green innovation as a strategic competency of SMEs’ performance. Further, green entrepreneurial orientation and green innovation can assist SME managers in understanding the factors leading to sustainable performance of businesses. Full article
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Article
A Missed Opportunity for Men? Partnered and Employed Individuals’ Involvement with Housework during the COVID-19 Lockdown in the UK
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 135; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040135 - 13 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1580
Abstract
Given the outbreak of the coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19), pandemic during March 2020, lockdown measures taken by governments have forced many families, especially those who have children, to re-arrange domestic and market work division. In this study, I investigate the factors associated with partnered [...] Read more.
Given the outbreak of the coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19), pandemic during March 2020, lockdown measures taken by governments have forced many families, especially those who have children, to re-arrange domestic and market work division. In this study, I investigate the factors associated with partnered and employed individuals’ involvement with housework during the COVID-19 lockdown in the United Kingdom. Drawing evidence from the first wave of the Covid-19 Survey from the Five National Longitudinal Studies dataset with using OLS regressions, this study found that daily working hours, socioeconomic status, and partner’s key worker status are important indicators of daily time spent on housework. Furthermore, interaction analysis showed that women living with a key worker partner not only did more housework than women whose partner was working in a regular job, but they also did more housework than men living with a key worker partner during the lockdown. Policy implications of regulating maximum daily working hours and key worker status are discussed in the context of re-arranging paid and unpaid work between couples during the first lockdown in the United Kingdom. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Family, Work and Welfare: A Gender Lens on COVID-19)
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Article
Unaccompanied Minors in Greece and Italy: An Exploration of the Challenges for Social Work within Tighter Immigration and Resource Constraints in Pandemic Times
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 134; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040134 - 12 Apr 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2170
Abstract
The number of unaccompanied minors (UAMs) arriving in the European Union (EU) has been increasing dramatically over recent years resulting in the formulation of EU policy directives around safeguarding and well-being. Notably, the majority of UAMs enter Europe irregularly through two main gateways [...] Read more.
The number of unaccompanied minors (UAMs) arriving in the European Union (EU) has been increasing dramatically over recent years resulting in the formulation of EU policy directives around safeguarding and well-being. Notably, the majority of UAMs enter Europe irregularly through two main gateways to the European continent: via Italy, using the Central Mediterranean Sea route; or through Greece, transiting through the Eastern Mediterranean route from Turkey, mostly via sea. Profiles of UAMs travelling via the two different routes are significantly diverse, reflecting Italy’s and Greece’s geographical proximity to North Africa and the Middle East, respectively. Although Italy has witnessed a decline since 2018 (Todaro and Romano 2019), the two countries have faced a significant increase in UAMs, and this has required a considerable reorganisation of the reception systems and, more generally, of their welfare systems. However, difficulties in securing adequate reception for UAMs seeking protection have persisted in both countries. Through an analysis of the impact of the pandemic on the Italian and Greek reception systems and social interventions with UAMs, we utilised a multiple embedded case study approach within a comparative analysis, to identify key changes in the main services which should be guaranteed to minors—namely, hosting/housing, guardianship, foster care, family/relatives reunification, school integration, language, job training for care leaving, and preparation for leaving care after 18 years (Di Rosa 2017; Buchanan and Kallinikaki 2018; Barn et al. 2020). Against a background of critical reviews of the main issues related to policies and reported social work practice in a context of COVID-19 precarity, set within a wider EU framework, this paper contributes to the literature with an analysis of the current situation and the tightening of the conditions of reception, inclusion and integration that await UAMs in these gateway countries today. We conclude that with the suspension of key services and amenities, and with a practical halt to the due process of immigration and asylum, social workers are facing a difficult challenge to prevent the deterioration of UAMs’ mental health and well-being. Full article
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Article
European Muslim Youth and Gender (in)Equality Discourse: Towards a More Critical Academic Inquiry
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 133; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040133 - 09 Apr 2021
Viewed by 1628
Abstract
In Europe, gender equality can be framed as a secular value, juxtaposed against affiliation with and practice of Islam. Academic and public debate has either given special attention to the spread of religious fundamentalism in Europe, or to the way Muslim women dress, [...] Read more.
In Europe, gender equality can be framed as a secular value, juxtaposed against affiliation with and practice of Islam. Academic and public debate has either given special attention to the spread of religious fundamentalism in Europe, or to the way Muslim women dress, citing how both purportedly jeopardize gender equality. This is despite findings that a link between gender equality and religiosity or practice of Islam is neither inherent nor circumscribed. Moreover, it is possible to demonstrate that such discourse rests on implicitly racialized conceptualizations of the Muslim “other”. Meanwhile, Muslim youth in particular are benchmarked against these imagined standards of gender equality, as compared with non-Muslim peers. This work examines ways in which normative secular frameworks and discourses, taking ownership of gender equality narratives, have shaped Europe’s academic inquiry regarding Muslim youth. It notes what is absent in this inquiry, including intersections of race and class, which remain divorced from the limited conversation on gender and religious difference. A reflexive, intersectional approach to this discussion, conscious of the importance of embedded racial or structural inequality and what is absent in current inquiry, better serves in understanding and navigating power relations that ultimately contribute to multiple exclusion of these youth. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Racialized Citizenship in Superdiverse Europe)
Article
Increasing the Efficiency of Enterprises in Tourism Sector Using Innovative Management Methods and Tools
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 132; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040132 - 09 Apr 2021
Viewed by 1544
Abstract
The paper deals with the issue of increasing the efficiency of business management using modern management methods and tools in tourism enterprises. The basis of the paper form hypotheses focused on the use of the concept of Balanced Scorecard, controlling, benchmarking, and talent [...] Read more.
The paper deals with the issue of increasing the efficiency of business management using modern management methods and tools in tourism enterprises. The basis of the paper form hypotheses focused on the use of the concept of Balanced Scorecard, controlling, benchmarking, and talent management within the tourism enterprises. Based on the p-value (0.576) in the case of first hypothesis, we can confirm that there is no statistically significant relationship between the openness of hotels to change, innovation, and the willingness to introduce controlling into management. The p-value (0.004) achieved in the case of the second hypothesis confirmed a statistically significant relationship between the hotel classification category and the use of the modern methods in plan design. In the third hypothesis, we examined whether hotels focusing on the sales maximization tend to use their capital for modernization. Based on the validity of the inequality p-value (0.080), we confirm that there is no statistically significant relationship between the pricing approach and the use of capital. Searching strategic tool in management of a business in tourism is still an actual issue. Businesses are especially managed by financial indicators, but modern methods show the growing significance of non-financial indicators. Full article
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Article
Citizenship Educational Policy: A Case of Russophone Minority in Estonia
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 131; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040131 - 06 Apr 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1563
Abstract
In the contemporary era, societies are divided, and political polarization is increasing. One of the most powerful instruments the government can use is general standard education, specifically citizenship education. We will look at the case of Estonia, because Estonia’s main political cleavage is [...] Read more.
In the contemporary era, societies are divided, and political polarization is increasing. One of the most powerful instruments the government can use is general standard education, specifically citizenship education. We will look at the case of Estonia, because Estonia’s main political cleavage is the ethnic cleavage between the Estonian and the Russophone community. Our main research question is as follows: How would it be possible to use democratic citizenship education to decrease in the future the socio-economic inequality between different communities in Estonia? We will outline the context of ethnic socio-economic inequality in Estonia and show how these differences have been at least partially influenced by the current education system in Estonia and how citizenship education can be used to reduce these inequalities in the future. We will conduct an empirical analysis of the curriculum, and this will be followed by semi-structured qualitative interviews. In the discussion, we will make suggestions to the current Estonian citizenship education policy and offer various insights into tackling this issue. Full article
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Article
On the Streets of Paris: The Experience of Displaced Migrants and Refugees
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 130; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040130 - 02 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1703
Abstract
In the wake of the demolition of the “The Jungle” at Calais, northern France, in October 2016, more than three thousand asylum seekers, refugees and other informal immigrants at any given time live in informal tent cities throughout the city’s northern areas. These [...] Read more.
In the wake of the demolition of the “The Jungle” at Calais, northern France, in October 2016, more than three thousand asylum seekers, refugees and other informal immigrants at any given time live in informal tent cities throughout the city’s northern areas. These makeshift camps appear to manifest a central issue in the French asylum system, that is applicants after making a claim for protection, and awaiting a hearing or decision, receive next to no formal support (financial, or residential) and are largely left to fend for themselves.Not all of the camp residents are asylum seekers wanting to stay in France. Some are migrants (or asylum seekers) en route to the United Kingdom; others are refugees who received French protection, with no housing. Between 2015–2017 there were multiple outbreaks of scabies in these tent cities leading to sanitation workers refusing to work in their vicinity. The current Covid-19 crisis has, moreover, further exacerbated concerns about the health of the unhoused asylum seekers and migrants in Paris - unaccompanied minors, in particular. This article will consider the repeated displacement, or dispersal, of this population in terms of the changing “politics of immigration”and policing in France under President Emmanuel Macron. In order to present the broader social context, it will also describe current events in Paris, including Macron government’s legislation relating to asylum/immigration, policing and more, amid the Covid-19 health crisis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Human Rights and Displaced People in Exceptional Times)
Article
Strategies for Gaining Full Citizenship in the First Generation of Indochinese Students
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 129; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040129 - 01 Apr 2021
Viewed by 1245
Abstract
The history of the acquisition of French citizenship by Indochinese university élites remains yet to be written because few researchers have looked at the role played by sport and physical education in developing the Vietnamese élite. These young students discovered such physical activities [...] Read more.
The history of the acquisition of French citizenship by Indochinese university élites remains yet to be written because few researchers have looked at the role played by sport and physical education in developing the Vietnamese élite. These young students discovered such physical activities at school and many of them claimed judicial/legal equality with the French. This article will demonstrate that sports and physical education were the key stages in a strategy for certain Indochinese students to become French citizens. At the same time, this tactic generated much tension within the Vietnamese student community between the two world wars. Full article
Article
Women Mayors in Spain: An Analysis of Gender Differences in the Management and Quality of Information on Municipal Websites
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 128; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040128 - 01 Apr 2021
Viewed by 1468
Abstract
This article analyses the differences in the level of transparency and quality of information on the institutional websites of Spanish councils depending on whether the mayor’s office is held by a woman or a man. We focus on 605 Spanish municipalities with more [...] Read more.
This article analyses the differences in the level of transparency and quality of information on the institutional websites of Spanish councils depending on whether the mayor’s office is held by a woman or a man. We focus on 605 Spanish municipalities with more than 10,000 inhabitants in which women mayors represent 26.3% (n = 159) of the total. The method is based on 52 quantitative indicators divided into two thematic blocks related to municipal transparency and to information for participation. The principal results reveal that municipalities led by women yield better results in terms of compliance with the indicators evaluated, with 50.68%, compared to the municipalities in which the mayor is a man, with 38.13%. In addition, a more detailed analysis reveals how women mayors obtain better results in all groups of indicators: transparency, quality of the information published on municipal websites and tools provided for citizen participation. The study reveals how the increase in elected women has a positive influence on the implementation of policies that allow for more transparent information and communication and that promote greater inclusion of citizens in the public debate. Full article
Article
Gender Differences in the Mitigating Effect of Co-Parenting on Parental Burnout: The Gender Dimension Applied to COVID-19 Restrictions and Parental Burnout Levels
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 127; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040127 - 31 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2207
Abstract
Parenting is recognized as a complex and stressful activity, which in recent years has been linked to the potential development of parental burnout among mothers and fathers. With the spread of COVID-19 around the globe, not only have situations of health emergency and [...] Read more.
Parenting is recognized as a complex and stressful activity, which in recent years has been linked to the potential development of parental burnout among mothers and fathers. With the spread of COVID-19 around the globe, not only have situations of health emergency and economic difficulty emerged, but also tremendous impacts on individual lives and family role divisions, which continue to be experienced today. As lockdown measures have affected unemployment rates, financial insecurity levels, social support, amount of leisure time, and the number of caring responsibilities, parents are expected to be at higher risk for developing parental burnout. Co-parenting is presented as a factor which can mitigate the effect between COVID-19 lockdown measures and the levels of experienced parental burnout. Nevertheless, we argue that the role of co-parenting in association with the implications of COVID-19 on parental stress differs between men and women. As parenthood remains an activity that is largely gender-based, co-parenting is hypothesized to be of more crucial importance in attenuating the effect between COVID-19 lockdown measures and parental burnout for fathers in comparison to mothers. Our results confirm previous findings that COVID-19 has increased levels of parental burnout. The relationship between state-imposed COVID-19 lockdown measures and levels of parental burnout was not found to be significantly affected by co-parenting. However, when assessing this two-way interaction separately for men and women, we saw that this mitigating effect was significant for fathers and non-significant for mothers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Family, Work and Welfare: A Gender Lens on COVID-19)
Article
Secondary School Students’ Perception of the Acquisition of Social Science Skill
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 126; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040126 - 31 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1381
Abstract
The aim of this study is to find out the relevance of the competences worked on in the area of social science, specifically in the subjects of geography and history, through the perceptions of pupils in the 4th year of compulsory secondary education [...] Read more.
The aim of this study is to find out the relevance of the competences worked on in the area of social science, specifically in the subjects of geography and history, through the perceptions of pupils in the 4th year of compulsory secondary education (ESO). In order to carry out the survey, a purposive sampling was carried out in which more than 1400 4th year ESO students (in Spain) participated. In addition, using a Likert-type scale of our own creation called Evaluation of the Perception of Social Science Competences (EPECOCISO) and following a design of quantitative methodology, an exploratory factor analysis was carried out with the analysis software SPSS through the descriptive process, which allowed us to select the three factors that make up the study. Subsequently, correlations were established between factors through Pearson’s test, and between the different variables that make up each one of them with the socio-demographic variables (distinguishing between ordinal and nominal variables) through the chi-square test of independence and Cramer’s V test (nominal), as well as the linearity test, Goodman’s gamma test, and the Kruskal (ordinal) test. Finally, one of the most important conclusions of this study is that the difficulties encountered by students in the acquisition of competences is conditioned by the development of the assessment processes that are carried out. Full article
Article
Language as a Trigger for Racism: Language Barriers at Healthcare Institutions in Slovenia
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 125; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040125 - 30 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1635
Abstract
The article analyzes the impact of language barriers on the medical treatment of foreign-speaking patients and illustrates that the absence of systemic, institutional responses to language barriers in healthcare facilities exacerbates racist attitudes toward migrants and ethnic groups. The article is based on [...] Read more.
The article analyzes the impact of language barriers on the medical treatment of foreign-speaking patients and illustrates that the absence of systemic, institutional responses to language barriers in healthcare facilities exacerbates racist attitudes toward migrants and ethnic groups. The article is based on 201 interviews with healthcare workers, employees of public or non-governmental institutions as well as users of healthcare services that were conducted between 2018 and 2019 in twelve local communities in Slovenia. Following the methodological and conceptual framework, the first part of the article highlights the various negative consequences of language barriers experienced by healthcare workers and foreign-speaking patients. The second part shows that in the absence of an accessible network of professional intercultural mediators or interpreters, healthcare workers are left to their own devices with respect to overcoming language barriers. Finally, the last part of the article shows that many interlocutors are increasingly searching for the culprit for this situation. Some healthcare workers attribute the responsibility to the abstract concept of the “system”, while others attribute the responsibility exclusively to migrants, thus perpetuating key elements of the culture of racism present in Slovenia. In this culture of racism, knowledge of Slovene language becomes one of the most important criteria that distinguishes deserving from undeserving migrants. The latter are a privileged object of racist responses at the level of cultural, institutional and personal racism, which is proving to be mutually toxic. Full article
Article
New Management Approaches in Digitized Work as the Cure for Inequality?
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 124; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040124 - 30 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1637
Abstract
Due to the increasing importance of digitization, ICT and engineering sectors are also growing. In these sectors, there are a lot of high-qualified and well-paid jobs. However, despite the growing importance and popularity of digital solutions, one fact (at least) is, unfortunately, still [...] Read more.
Due to the increasing importance of digitization, ICT and engineering sectors are also growing. In these sectors, there are a lot of high-qualified and well-paid jobs. However, despite the growing importance and popularity of digital solutions, one fact (at least) is, unfortunately, still very stable within the ICT and engineering sectors: When it comes to employees, there are still huge differences with respect to gender and gender stereotypes. (Commercial) technology development can be regarded as having masculine connotations both structurally and culturally. Therefore, we address these connotations, especially the roles of androcentric bureaucracy, which could be described as hierarchical, technocentric, and very controlling-oriented, and (the structural possibilities of) self-efficacy. We discuss, conceptually and empirically with a focus on software development, whether new management approaches like agile frameworks and new management roles like Feel-good Managers and Scrum Master could be seen as a cure for inequality or if there are new stereotypical gender-related ascriptions for specific activities or processes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gender Equality, Diversity, and Self-Efficacy at Work)
Article
The Border Harms of Human Displacement: Harsh Landscapes and Human Rights Violations
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 123; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040123 - 30 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1855
Abstract
Building on the work of critical migration and border studies, particularly the scholarship on the suffering of displaced people through border-related violence, the article focuses on bordering practices and human rights violations relating to the Syrian civil war. It advances the argument that [...] Read more.
Building on the work of critical migration and border studies, particularly the scholarship on the suffering of displaced people through border-related violence, the article focuses on bordering practices and human rights violations relating to the Syrian civil war. It advances the argument that during peoples’ fragmented journeys to seek safety and protection within and outside of Syria, which are often punctuated by stops and starts, they encounter one or more of three kinds of bordering practices—hardening of borders, expansion of borders, and pushbacks—that can injure them and violate international human rights and often the principle of non-refoulement. The article refers to these encounters as the “border harms of human displacement”. The analysis emphasizes the experiences of people on the move and the cruelties and spatial violence they endure. The latter include lengthy periods of walking and running, travel across hazardous lands and seas, family separation, state restrictions, and mistreatment by border authorities. Yet, in response to such difficulties, they continue to assert their agency by negotiating bordering practices and harsh landscapes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Human Rights and Displaced People in Exceptional Times)
Review
A Conceptual Examination about the Correlates of Psychological Capital (PsyCap) among the Saudi Arabian Workforce
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 122; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040122 - 29 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1622
Abstract
Psychological capital (PsyCap), which is considered a higher-order construct, is composed of hope, efficacy, optimism, and resilience. The importance of PsyCap stems from the fact that it has the propensity to motivate individuals in their accomplishment of organizational tasks and goals. The concept [...] Read more.
Psychological capital (PsyCap), which is considered a higher-order construct, is composed of hope, efficacy, optimism, and resilience. The importance of PsyCap stems from the fact that it has the propensity to motivate individuals in their accomplishment of organizational tasks and goals. The concept is related to many behavioral concepts including: subjective well-being, social capital, employee engagement, and emotional intelligence. The majority of the research literature on PsyCap has originated from the West, and limited literature exists about its antecedents and consequences among the Saudi population. Studies undertaken in Saudi Arabia must take into account unique cultural aspects. The present work attempts to identify the contribution that could emerge from the relationship of PsyCap, with constructs like subjective well-being, social capital, and employee engagement, considered through the prism of culture. It also recognizes the influence of, and upon, the external environment. Going beyond the replication of earlier studies, the present work considers the constructs to have a yin-yang relationship. The study presented a model of comprehensive framework emerging from the relevant literature to bring out the complex connections between PsyCap and other constructs. It also emphasized the importance of culture on the identified constructs, and its implication on contribution and performance. The proposed framework needs to be further tested by academics, researchers, and practitioners to confirm its practical implications in industry. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Work, Employment and the Labor Market)
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Article
Immigrants’ Experiences on Integration While Attempting to Access the Labour Market: Implications for Social Work Practice
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 121; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040121 - 29 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1679
Abstract
(1) Background: The challenge of immigrants and their integration into adopted countries is a key topic for the global field of social work. However, there is a paucity of research on immigrants’ lived experiences in gaining access to the labour market. Thus, this [...] Read more.
(1) Background: The challenge of immigrants and their integration into adopted countries is a key topic for the global field of social work. However, there is a paucity of research on immigrants’ lived experiences in gaining access to the labour market. Thus, this study examines how immigrants in Norway experience integration while in the process of gaining access to the labour market. The prevalent notion of integration achieved through gainful employment narrows the concept of integration and disguises the underlying marginalization and inequalities that are derived from majority- minority dividing lines. (2) Methods: Data were collected via nine qualitative semi-structured interviews with ten immigrants (one interview was with a couple) living in Norway. Data was analysed by using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. (3) Results: The results showed that the participants experienced social exclusion but accepted this as an inevitable part of being an immigrant. The participants regarded the learning of Norwegian language as the key aspect to understanding social customs and forming informal relationships with native Norwegians and important for achieving integration. Freedom and equality were also regarded as issues of great importance. (4) Conclusions: The results provide the field of social work with important insights towards informing social work practices and challenging current paradigms. Full article
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Article
The Fragility-Grievances-Conflict Triangle in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA): An Exploration of the Correlative Associations
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 120; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040120 - 27 Mar 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2018
Abstract
The intention of this special issue of Social Sciences is to study state fragility and its relationship with conflict and grievances in the post-Cold War Middle East and North Africa (MENA). This article will lay the foundation for such a study by offering [...] Read more.
The intention of this special issue of Social Sciences is to study state fragility and its relationship with conflict and grievances in the post-Cold War Middle East and North Africa (MENA). This article will lay the foundation for such a study by offering a conceptual foundation, data and the identification of the correlative associations that are specific to the MENA region. This article suggests that the relationship between political legitimacy, factionalism of the state, and conflict needs special, MENA-specific emphasis, as this relationship seems more prominently different in the MENA region, compared to the rest of the world. While in the rest of the world, different aspects of state fragility all relate to grievances and conflict dynamics, in the MENA region political factionalism has a disproportionate role in the explanation of conflict grievances and violence. Moreover, the role of oil dependence, and the impact of external intervention requires attention of specialists of the region. Full article
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Article
Work–Family Articulation Policies in Portugal and Gender Equality: Advances and Challenges
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 119; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040119 - 26 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1976
Abstract
Portugal has been described as a singular case in terms of the participation of women in the labour market and work–life balance policies. Unlike the other so-called Southern European countries, where a belated and somewhat slower move away from the male breadwinner model [...] Read more.
Portugal has been described as a singular case in terms of the participation of women in the labour market and work–life balance policies. Unlike the other so-called Southern European countries, where a belated and somewhat slower move away from the male breadwinner model has been found, Portugal stands out from the other EU member states with its relatively high rate of female employment and the prevalence of the dual-earner model based on continuous and fundamentally full-time employment. Moreover, the “early return to full-time work and a gender equality oriented model” calls for a separate analysis of this country’s case. In addition to providing a comprehensive overview of the singularities of Portugal’s employment patterns and work–family articulation policies, this article substantially adds to the existing literature by bringing new analytical angles to the debate. The intention is therefore to shed light on the political discourses that fuelled the policy debate throughout the three decades following Portugal’s transition to democracy, up until the latest and most decisive policy changes. This article also examines the key social actors’ views about the political process sustaining the development of policies in this area and identifies the major players promoting the most progressive legislative advances in the country. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gender Relations at Work: Persistent Patterns and Social Change)
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Article
Being a Group Fitness Instructor during the COVID-19 Crisis: Navigating Professional Identity, Social Distancing, and Community
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 118; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040118 - 25 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2558
Abstract
Research question and purpose: Les Mills is a New Zealand-based fitness distributor with a community consisting of approximately 140.000 instructors worldwide who teach standardized workout routines. This paper aims to explore how the COVID-19 pandemic and related measurements, such as social distancing affect [...] Read more.
Research question and purpose: Les Mills is a New Zealand-based fitness distributor with a community consisting of approximately 140.000 instructors worldwide who teach standardized workout routines. This paper aims to explore how the COVID-19 pandemic and related measurements, such as social distancing affect the everyday lives and professions of Les Mills International (LMI) group fitness instructors. The aim was met with the following research questions: RQ1: How are social distancing and social connectedness understood, and how do they condition LMI instructors’ understanding of their profession? RQ2: What do LMI instructors think about the #LesMillsUnited campaign to maintain a strong trainer community in the midst of the pandemic? RQ3: How do LMI instructors think that group fitness will change long term due to social distancing? Research methods: Using qualitative measures and a case-study-based approach, data were gathered through interviews with LMI-certified group fitness instructors. Seven semi-structured focused group discussions with fifteen group fitness instructors from different countries were conducted and audio recorded. The first round of virtual discussions took place in April 2020, and the follow-up talks in September 2020. A thematic analysis was employed to analyze the material. Results and findings: According to the participants, online classes as a means of upholding group fitness in times of social distancing is an insufficient substitute to face-to-face instructing, lacking social connectedness that is normally maintained through successful rituals or social scripts. Navigating “instructorhood” during the pandemic includes emotional labor where not only relationships to clients are challenged, but instructors also experience societal pressure to reinvent themselves as instructors. Implications: With no way of telling how long social distancing needs to be practiced, the group fitness industry is facing unprecedented challenges. Making sense of the group fitness profession currently preoccupies instructors who may now have to redefine to themselves how they can teach, and who for. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Work, Employment and the Labor Market)
Article
Entrepreneurship, Sport, Sustainability and Integration: A Business Model in the Low-Season Tourism Sector
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 117; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040117 - 25 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1748
Abstract
The global tourism reality is changing, and not only because of the COVID-19 pandemic. This reality is especially representative in countries such as Spain, which are highly dependent on the income generated by the tourism sector. In these destinations, it is necessary to [...] Read more.
The global tourism reality is changing, and not only because of the COVID-19 pandemic. This reality is especially representative in countries such as Spain, which are highly dependent on the income generated by the tourism sector. In these destinations, it is necessary to seek innovation and specialization in the sector in order to achieve new business models. This need is even more pressing in destinations overcrowded by the sun and beach effect, as is the case of Mallorca. The proposed work combines the concepts of sports tourism with the development of a wealth-generating business model that will contribute to promoting a tourism that is sustainable, environmentally friendly and deseasonalized. On the other hand, the proposed work will contribute to promoting integration and equality in the participation of women in sports through the development of a model based on the promotion of women’s football. Using the methodology of case analysis, the results of all the approaches outlined are provided, and we obtained a wealth-generation model that is easily replicable and sustainable over time. This work provides a solution to the combination of a sustainable business model that links responsible tourism, the promotion of women’s sport and the generation of wealth. Full article
Article
Radicalisation, Foreign Fighters and the Ukraine Conflict: A Playground for the Far-Right?
Soc. Sci. 2021, 10(4), 116; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci10040116 - 25 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 3162
Abstract
Ukraine has been viewed by some as having become a training ground, networking opportunity, and general hub for the far-right due to the conflict in the east of the country, which began in 2014. With this type of terrorism on the rise in [...] Read more.
Ukraine has been viewed by some as having become a training ground, networking opportunity, and general hub for the far-right due to the conflict in the east of the country, which began in 2014. With this type of terrorism on the rise in the West and events like the storming of the US Capitol Building in January 2021 fresh in the memory, it should come as no surprise that any such possibilities will generate concern. To investigate the types and extent of the threats posed by participants in the Ukraine conflict, we scrutinise the activities of a few alumni that we know of to date, as well as highlighting neglected historical episodes of right-wing fighters. We make three arguments here based on occurrences so far. Firstly, we know little about far-right foreign fighters and more attention needs to be paid to historical instances of the phenomenon. Secondly, some limited but diverse threats have already arisen from the Ukraine conflict and others may emerge in the future, but it would be unwise to overplay and homogenise the problem. Finally, it is Ukraine itself that probably faces the greatest challenges from its domestic far-right, although, if left unchecked, it may affect others in providing a space for, and permitting the growth of, connections with like-minded individuals and groups based elsewhere. Despite our warning about exaggerating the problem, Western security services should be taking the far-right very seriously at present, such as in relation to potential infiltration of them by such elements. Full article
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