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Wieslander, M. (2019). Controversial diversity: Diversity discourses and dilemmas among Swedish police recruits. Policing & society
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Controversial diversity: Diversity discourses and dilemmas among Swedish police recruits
2019 (English)In: Policing & society, ISSN 1043-9463, E-ISSN 1477-2728Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

Diversity strategies to increase social inclusion in organisations have been a major concern in various institutions during recent decades. This article examines Swedish police recruits’ talk about diversity. The study is based on data from ethnographic fieldwork at the Swedish National Police Academy and focus group interviews of police recruits. Twenty-seven recruits were interviewed in their final year at the police academy, which included a period of probationary service at a police station. Using a discourse analysis, the article explores how the Swedish police's official policies for diversity and social equality are recognised, but also called into question, by Swedish police recruits. One dominating discourse of difference and two controversial discourses on diversity are outlined, showing that recruits frequently draw upon multiple discourses to legitimise their claims for and against diversity. A conceptual framework is developed for understanding the discourses and dilemmas of diversity within the police, with examples provided of how social order is reproduced among recruits.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2019
Keywords
diversity, discourse, dilemma, police
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary Pedagogical Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-156639 (URN)10.1080/10439463.2019.1611818 (DOI)000471450400001 ()
Note

Funding agencies: Karlstad University; Swedish Council for Working Life and Social Research [2009-2011]

Available from: 2019-05-02 Created: 2019-05-02 Last updated: 2019-07-15Bibliographically approved
Nordvall, H. & Wieslander, M. (2019). When Gender Training Backlashes: Participants’ Resistance and the Fragility of Commonsensical Feminism. Adult Education Quarterly, 69(3), 207-224
Open this publication in new window or tab >>When Gender Training Backlashes: Participants’ Resistance and the Fragility of Commonsensical Feminism
2019 (English)In: Adult Education Quarterly, ISSN 0741-7136, E-ISSN 1552-3047, Vol. 69, no 3, p. 207-224Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Feminist educators often encounter different forms of resistance from both maleand female participants. This article uses a neo-Gramscian theoretical perspective todiscuss the importance of considering this resistance when analyzing the relationshipbetween pedagogical design and outcomes. The study draws on survey data andparticipant observation from a case study of a workshop designed to raise awarenessof gender issues. The results from a before-and-after survey show that the workshophad the opposite effect to the one intended in terms of changes in the participants’perceptions of gender. Having a “failed case” as the center of attention, the articlesheds light on the fragility of mainstream discourse on gender equality and thedilemmas of engaging in a struggle over common sense.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sage Publications, 2019
Keywords
feminist pedagogy, resistance, neo-Gramscian theory, hegemony, common sense, popular education, gender training
National Category
Educational Sciences Pedagogy Didactics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-156267 (URN)10.1177/0741713619841128 (DOI)
Projects
Mobiliseringsdidaktik
Funder
Swedish Research Council
Available from: 2019-04-10 Created: 2019-04-10 Last updated: 2019-09-04Bibliographically approved
Wieslander, M. (2018). Learning the (hidden) silence policy within the police. Studies in Continuing Education
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Learning the (hidden) silence policy within the police
2018 (English)In: Studies in Continuing Education, ISSN 0158-037X, E-ISSN 1470-126XArticle in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

Many organisations declare that the ability for employees to speak out about organisational matters is important for organisational development. However, recent literature reports a widespread fear of retaliation among employees if they express themselves – especially within the police. The point of departure of the present article is the tension and discrepancy between official policy and officers’ accounts of the conversational climate within the police. Through empirical examples from data consisting of field studies and 33 interviews with police officers in subordinate ranks, this article describes how employees learn and reproduce informal norms that condition the conversational and working climate within the organisation. In contrast to official guidelines within the police, employees learn the informal cultural norms of keeping a low profile and remaining silent through everyday talk. Theories that stress how discourses, storytelling, and noisy silences accomplish social action are used to explain why these informal norms are given such power within an institutional setting.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis Group, 2018
Keywords
Everyday talk, police, silence, whistleblowing
National Category
Work Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-150188 (URN)10.1080/0158037x.2018.1497592 (DOI)
Available from: 2018-08-16 Created: 2018-08-16 Last updated: 2018-08-16
Wieslander, M. (2018). Marginalised voices in the inclusive recruitment discourse: a dilemma of inclusion/exclusion in the (Swedish) police. European Journal for Research on the Education and Learning of Adults, 9(1), 61-77
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Marginalised voices in the inclusive recruitment discourse: a dilemma of inclusion/exclusion in the (Swedish) police
2018 (English)In: European Journal for Research on the Education and Learning of Adults, ISSN 2000-7426, E-ISSN 2000-7426, Vol. 9, no 1, p. 61-77Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Recruitment for diversity is part of a range of proactive strategies for overcoming occupational stereotyping in a number of professions, as well as addressing a history of discrimination against women and minority groups. One such campaign launched by the Swedish police involves 'inclusive recruitment'. By analysing the discourse of inclusive recruitment and its subject positions in police student talk, this article shows how borders between people who are assigned different social categories are constructed, challenged and reinforced. Positive intentions in agendas towards diversity are problematised when minorities are ascribed as admitted on quotation, which places them in a ubordinate and 'risky position' within an occupation and on less legitimate premises. A dilemma emerges between a call to represent minority groups and the risk of categorising them as 'others'. In particular, voices of resistance from ethnic minority police women show how practices of exclusion could jeopardise efforts to achieve inclusion.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping University Electronic Press, 2018
Keywords
Diversity; intersectionality; minority background; police; resistance recruitment
National Category
Sociology (excluding Social Work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-150190 (URN)10.3384/rela.2000-7426.rela9106 (DOI)
Available from: 2018-08-16 Created: 2018-08-16 Last updated: 2018-08-16
Wieslander, M. (2018). When whistling fades: (New) Theories for Understanding Organizational Silence. In: : . Paper presented at The Nordic Work Life Conference 2018. Oslo 13 – 15 June 2018.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>When whistling fades: (New) Theories for Understanding Organizational Silence
2018 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Freedom of expression and the ability to speak out about organizational matters are not only work related rights for employees, but have also been declared as important for organizational development by researchers as well as the organisations themselves. However, various constrains of these ideals can be expected and have been reported upon. As an example, recent literature inform of a widespread fear of retaliation among employees when expressing work related criticism. This paper suggests a (new) theoretical approach to understand why and when internal criticism becomes supressed within an institution. A vast body of research within this field has been theorized from an organizational and managerial perspective, while few studies have focused on theories of learning in relation to whistleblowing or organizational silence. Therefore, this paper aligns this approach and seeks to understand organisational silence through a learning perspective, by combining an approach that considers the performative aspects of discourse together with the theory of institutional storytelling and the concept noisy silence.

The paper sets out from a tension and discrepancy between the official policy and officers’ accounts of the conversational climate within a Swedish police district. Through empirical examples from data consisting of field studies and 33 interviews with police officers, this paper identifies and describes how employees draw upon and reproduce informal values that condition the conversational and working climate within the organization. In the long run, this restricts employees’ freedom of expression and action, such as reporting both internally and externally on various wrongdoings.

Keywords
whistleblowing, police, silence, everyday talk
National Category
Social Sciences Sociology Educational Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-150336 (URN)
Conference
The Nordic Work Life Conference 2018. Oslo 13 – 15 June 2018
Available from: 2018-08-16 Created: 2018-08-16 Last updated: 2018-08-23Bibliographically approved
Wieslander, M. (2017). Doing value policy: A local value contract as resource for group norm negotiation. In: : . Paper presented at EthiCo: What may be learnt in ethics? Present and future conceptions of ethical competence, Gothenburg, December 11-13, 2017..
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Doing value policy: A local value contract as resource for group norm negotiation
2017 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

There are many obstacles for employees to introduce discussions about ethical issues at workplaces. Some examples are the significance of maintaining smooth peer-relations and a strong group cohesion, as well as internal power relations. It is argued that in professions with strong ‘esprit de corps’ (such as rescue-services) the importance of friction free scenes supress the ability for various opinions and controversies in everyday discussions. This paper explores how local contracts about common principles on a group level can render opportunities for employees to address and negotiate existing values and norms, especially where there is a perceived suppressed communication climate on an institutional level. The paper focuses on a few cases from a field study in a police district, where some working groups highlighted the importance of continuously revising and discussing values on a group level. Departing from a theoretical perspective that focuses on the significance of social interaction, the paper analyses field observations, field notes and interviews with police employees on a subordinate level and first level managerial position. Artefacts, such as value contracts and an assessment of the contract, are also analysed. The preliminary findings shows how the use of a group contract and the assessment about the contract’s values and norms functions as a resource and creates a discursive space for group members to address and negotiate existing practices.

Keywords
Ethics, values, peer-relations, policy
National Category
Ethics Social Sciences Interdisciplinary Social Psychology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-144229 (URN)
Conference
EthiCo: What may be learnt in ethics? Present and future conceptions of ethical competence, Gothenburg, December 11-13, 2017.
Available from: 2018-01-11 Created: 2018-01-11 Last updated: 2018-01-19Bibliographically approved
Holgersson, S. & Wieslander, M. (2017). How aims of “looking good” may limit the possibilities of “being good”: The case of the Swedish Police. In: : . Paper presented at 33rd EGOS Colloquium: The Good Organization - Aspirations, Interventions, Struggles, July 5-7, 2017.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>How aims of “looking good” may limit the possibilities of “being good”: The case of the Swedish Police
2017 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The expression “being good or looking good” does not only highlight a tension between presented images of how an organization works and how it actually works, but also indicates that an aim to look good can have a negative impact on how an organization will work and evolve. In fact, when an organization has a strong aim to “look good” there is a risk that significant problems will be hidden or mitigated, and therefore remain unchanged. Various forms of inquiries, and even research, can contribute to create a good impression of an organization, and can be part of an organization’s image promoting strategies. We address a research gap in this paper by exploring how organizational image promoting may form, influence and can be prerequisite for how research and inquiries are done and presented, and how a pressure to build a good image of an organization affect the possibilities to develop the organization. By using several examples we aim to demonstrate various outcomes and dilemmas both for researchers doing research in an organization that puts a great effort in image promoting and for organizations with such an aim. The organization in focus for this paper is the Swedish police.

Keywords
police organization, branding, research
National Category
Other Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-139776 (URN)
Conference
33rd EGOS Colloquium: The Good Organization - Aspirations, Interventions, Struggles, July 5-7, 2017
Available from: 2017-08-15 Created: 2017-08-15 Last updated: 2019-03-28Bibliographically approved
Wieslander, M. (2017). Marginalised voices in police diversity discourse: A dilemma of inequality through 'widened recruitment' in the (Swedish) police. In: : . Paper presented at The 2017 conference of the ESREA Network on Gender and Adult Learning, University of Koblenz-Landau, Campus Koblenz, Germany, October 12-14, 2017..
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Marginalised voices in police diversity discourse: A dilemma of inequality through 'widened recruitment' in the (Swedish) police
2017 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Purpose – Diversity recruitment and affirmative action strategies in the police are part of a range of proactive strategies to overcome a history of discrimination and exclusion of women and minority groups. One effort in the Swedish Police has been the rhetoric and campaigns of ‘widened recruitment’ (Sw: breddad rekrytering). This article identifies and outlines the discourse of widened recruitment within the Swedish police. More specifically, it shows how social categorizations and subject positions in relation to widened recruitment are constructed, challenged and reinforced.

Design– The empirical data is from field studies at the Swedish National Police Academy and from eight focus group interviews with police officers in trainee. The data is analysed with reference to critical discursive psychology.

Findings – This paper argues that positive intentions of the diversity agenda are challenged when police students with minority background are ascribed affirmative action and a quota system and thus placed in a subordinate position on less legitimized premises within the constabulary. As a parallel result, a constituted norm of white, Swedish, heterosexual men are made invisible in diversity rhetoric, hence rendered natural and more legitimized within the police. A dilemma emerges, between the call for representation of social (minority) groups and the risk of ascribing these groups as ‘others’. Voices of resistance from ethnic minority police women show how discourses of exclusion might jeopardize the police’s effort for inclusion.

Research limitations/implications – The data concerns the Swedish police but major findings should be applicable to other public institutions as well that deals with diversity recruitment. The paper, which is empirically based, deals with and nuances the paradoxical effort to recognize social categorizations on the one hand, and on the other disregard them.

Value – The paper contributes to the research field of adult education and the conference theme by addressing political efforts of inclusion in vocational and adult education, with research in the interface of education, policy and practice.

Keywords
dilemma, diversity, intersectionality, minority background, police, resistance, widened recruitment, affirmative action
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary Gender Studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-142008 (URN)
Conference
The 2017 conference of the ESREA Network on Gender and Adult Learning, University of Koblenz-Landau, Campus Koblenz, Germany, October 12-14, 2017.
Available from: 2017-10-17 Created: 2017-10-17 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved
Organisations
Identifiers
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0002-7877-4669

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