Ethnicity, gender and gender equality

This research group is a forum for the acquirement and development of knowledge within the field of gender, ethnicity and gender equality. The choice of subjects and themes challenges the interplay of these categories within the lives of human beings in the societies and cultures they live within. The group takes use of cultural theories and analytical tools for analysing such interplay. An important point of focus is to make visible through analysis that which have been normalized and made a "taken for grantedness", and the power expressions this legitimate.

The groups themes of research are concentrated around work life/education, personal relations and the construction of gender, ethnicity and gender equality in different types of text material. Which understandings of gender and ethnicity is being shaped and administrated within the different arenas? What categories and phenomenon does gender and ethnicity interact with, and under what terms and with what effect on whom?

Coordinator: Trine Annfelt

Ongoing research projects with their starting point in this research group:

This research project will study the relation between gender equality and the global feminized migration of domestic workers and au pairs. The project is justified by a need for a better understanding of the significance of gender and ethnicity in the formulation of the equality politics of the Norwegian welfare state, with reference to equality between women and men, equality between ethnic majority and ethnic minorities and social/economic levelling.

Contact: Priscilla Ringrose

  • Experts and Minorities in the Land of Gender Equality

The project deals with gender equality in the Norwegian welfare state and raises the question of whether ideas and rhetoric on gender equality contribute to further hierarchy and processes of alienation. Does gender equality – as a discursive resource and/or social practice – become mixed up in processes of marginalization? The background for this question is criticism from Norwegian minority women and from post-colonial feminism. The question will be explored through empirical studies of how gender equality is understood, interpreted and shaped in various encounters between the welfare state's experts/public officials and people from ethnic minorities. One of the main objectives of this project is to help develop the notion and understanding of gender equality. The political ambition of the project is to promote an anti-racist feminism, policy and practice.  
This is an interdisciplinary (the humanities and social sciences) research project. It will be part of the Nordic Centre of Excellence: The Nordic Welfare State – Historical Foundations and Future Challenges.

Contact: Trine Annfelt

Earlier projects

  • Heteronormativity as a political implication. Family politics seen in a new perspective.

Project investigating the discursive productions of changing representations of different categories of women and men as parents, as these takes place in the forum of family politics and the children`s best as the main point of focus for the discussions.

Project leader: Trine Annfelt

  • Understandings of gender in Norwegian family politics

Project investigating understandings of gender in Norwegian family politics using the political debates around the legislation concerning children and parents; law of the 8th of April 1981, and the discussion around this.

Responsible for this project: Trine Annfelt

Project leader: Kari Melby

  • On its way? Negotiations of gender equality, gender and technical competence.

The project has as its goal to investigate what different gender equality discourses and technology discourses that exists in a technology-based organisation.

Responsible for this project: Marianne Eidem Fostervold

  • Gender equality – a borderline between ‘us' and ‘them'?

This project is about if and how the discourse of gender equality in the Norwegian society today makes cultural borderlines. Who is and what is accounted to belong to the category "Norwegian" when is comes to gender equality? How are gender, ethnicity, sexuality to be done to fit into the categories of gender equality and Norwegianness? How are these categories made, intertwined and related to other categories in those including and excluding processes? The empirical field is work organizations. The work life has in Norway been given an important position, concerning gender equality politics and diversity politics. And a main question in the project is how work organizations are dealing with those two politics at the same time. Financed by the Research Council of Norway through its gender research programme.


a) When Equality Becomes Differences. Gender, Ethnicity and Sexuality in Working Life

Responsible for this project: Berit Gullikstad

b) Talks about Gender and Ethnicity: An Analysis of Conversations in Work Organizations

Responsible for this project: Ellen Andenæs