Socio-structural influences on the work participation of refugees : an exploratory systematic mixed studies review

Mpofu, Elias, Stevens, Carol, Biggs, Herbert C., & Johnson, Ebonee T. (2012) Socio-structural influences on the work participation of refugees : an exploratory systematic mixed studies review. Vulnerable Groups and Inclusion, 3, pp. 1-22.

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This systematic mixed studies review aimed at synthesizing evidence from studies related to the influences on the work participation of people with refugee status (PWRS). The review focused on the role of proximal socio-structural barriers on work participation by PWRS while foregrounding related distal, intermediate, proximal, and meta-systemic influences. For the systematic search of the literature, we focused on databases that addressed work, well-being, and social policy in refugee populations, including, Medline, CINAHL, PsycInfo, Web of Science, Scopus, and Sociological Abstracts. Of the studies reviewed, 16 of 39 met the inclusion criteria and were retained for the final analysis. We performed a narrative synthesis of the evidence on barriers to work participation by PWRS, interlinking clusters of barriers potent to their effects on work participation. Findings from the narrative synthesis suggest that proximal factors, those at point of entry to the labor market, influence work participation more directly than distal or intermediate factors. Distal and intermediate factors achieve their effects on work participation by PWRS primarily through meta-systemic interlinkages, including host-country documentation and refugee administration provisions.

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ID Code: 56562
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: refugee, employment barriers, job networks, language proficiency, work and health, participation
DOI: 10.3402/vgi.v3i0.16066
ISSN: 2000-8023
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > DEMOGRAPHY (160300) > Migration (160303)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100) > Social and Community Psychology (170113)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012 The authors.
Copyright Statement: This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 Unported License (, permitting all non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Deposited On: 21 Jan 2013 22:35
Last Modified: 23 Jan 2013 05:42

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