International Policy Fellowship 2003-2004
Second Activity Report
August 2003-March 2004
"The Influence of ethnicity on the Labor Market opportunities.
A test case of accepting multicultural diversity in
The present activity report covers activities related to the research and writing of the research and policy papers in the period between August 2003 and March 2004.
The main emphasis of the second part of the fellowship was the writing on the research and policy papers on the basis of the collected materials.
Following the second IPF seminar which was held in June I have started to write a draft research paper. The draft research paper turned to be a much longer research paper (more than 50 pages) than I have initially planned. The length of the research paper was justified by the complexity of the problem that I have studies, i.e. discrimination on the grounds of ethnic origin and language on the Estonian labor market.
In the beginning of the September the research paper was completed and submitted to three mentors for review and comments as well as to the group mentor in
Drafting the draft research paper I have adopted an approach to conceptually complete the work. Thus, instead of writing in full only few chapters I have written all the chapters with some incomplete data to ensure that already in this earlier stage the overall adopted concept of the research is understood.
October - January
On the basis of the comments and evaluation from the mentors I have continued to work on the research paper. The empirical data still missing in the research was collected and included into the final version of the research paper. The draft policy paper started to be developed as well.
In consultation with the mentors it was decided not to mail massive questionnaire to the employers and employees due to the substantial change of the policy research design. All in all the change in the policy design was necessitated by the fact that the final research and policy recommendations are focused more on the macro rather than micro level. Thus, at this stage of the research it was pre-mature to send initially planned questionnaires. It was too early to address the concerns of individuals employers/employees that overall national employment/anti-discrimination policy contained of missing elements and ambiguities.
In addition to the improvement of the draft research and policy paper a number of meetings was held with representatives of Ministry of Social Affairs. The aim of the meetings was to better understand the possible further developments in the national employment policy in the light of the forthcoming European Union accession and as a consequence recourse to the financial instruments in particular European Social Fund.
In addition to the imperial research during this period I have also followed a societal debate on the need of adoption of the general anti-discrimination law. The debate in the society undertaken at the political level as well as on the level of mass media was instructive as revealed the standing grounds of all major stakeholders for the purposes of my policy paper.
February - April
This period of time was most interesting experience of the Fellowship. By the beginning of the March the research and policy papers have been completed. I have started to actively communicate with interested parties to distribute the results of the research. Before the work was submitted for final review to mentors the work has been review by three experts in the field of employment and anti-discrimination: Professor Dr. Norbert Reich, Professor David Trubek and Dr. Stephan Heidenhain (former head of the OSCE mission in Estonia).
Following the comments by the experts the research/policy paper was communicated to the mentors for review and final comments.
As a result of the active communication with the people working on the subject matter I have been invited to present the policy research findings on the international interdisciplinary conference organized by the Center of World Affairs and Global Economy and European Union Center of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. (http://eucenter.wisc.edu/Conferences/OMC_Oct04/index.htm)
At the end of April major amendments to the national law has been undertaken that significantly influenced the topic of my research paper. Therefore, I had to adjust my research/policy paper in accordance with the adopted amendments. The major changes of the national law necessitated by the implementation of the EC Race Directive (Directive 2000/43/EC) which have been adopted by the national legislator in just 14 days have delayed the publication of the final research/policy paper.
Nevertheless it was important to ensure that research reflects the most resent legislative and policy changes.
Post Fellowship Developments on the topic of the IPF research
On the national level through communication with public authorities at the ministry of social affairs the more 'ethnic friendly' language was included in the national policy documents adopted in the spring of 2004 in the area of employment.
Following the completion of the IPF research paper the finding of the research have been presented in October at the international conference in University of Wisconsin/Madison. Representatives of the EU Commission, research institutes, academia and governmental representatives attended the conference from EU countries. The IPF research and policy papers have been personally handed to the representative of the Commission and a member of the Employment Committee reviewing the country reports.
As a result of the conference there is a proposal (currently in discussion) to continue the research on the ethnic discrimination on the Estonian labour market with one of the research centers in Sweden.
On the basis of the IPF research findings analyzing the national policy documents in the area of employment and non-discrimination in its application to the Estonian labor market the further research has been undertaken by the author. The author has analyzed the current ethnic situation on the Estonian labor market (as have been identified by the IPF research) against the background of international and European Union law within the framework of the Master Thesis at the Riga Graduate School of Law. The master thesis was publicly defended at the Riga Graduate School of Law in November. The thesis was awarded a grade pass with distinction.