ISOK â€“ Competence Development in Eastern Finland â€“ ESF
ISOK is an Eastern Finnish co-operation project, which is coordinated by Savo Vocational College in North Savo region. The partnership consists of the University of Eastern Finland and the North Karelia College. The target group of the project is primarily immigrants in Eastern Finland as well as training staff of training organizations. The main purpose is to promote and develop efficient validation procedures among immigrants and give training to trainers and guidance counselors, who are involved in the validation procedures. Aims of the ISOK -project Enables flexibility and mobility in the education and work market Promotes the ability of companies in Eastern Finland to work in a multicultural environment and their readiness to employ immigrants Intensifies cooperation between companies and training organizations in Eastern Finland and provide models of multicultural working procedures for companies daily practices Carries out research on guidance procedures and validation of prior learning among immigrants AND on Eastern Finnish immigrant entrepreneurs and their networks Supports guidance and information units in Eastern Finland by providing them process descriptions and tools on validation procedures, quality in validation, web-based guidance tools etc. Gives in-depth training for staff of training organizations on validation of prior learning
SUMMARIES ON THE RESEACH CARRIED OUT IN ISOK -PROJECT Okulov Jaana University of Kuopio Department of Social Work and Social Pedagogy Researcher, PhD student Master in Education, Master in Social Sciences firstname.lastname@example.org
ETHNIC ENTREPRENEURSHIP IN EASTERN FINLAND Ageing of the citizens of the European Union member countries, as well as expectable labour shortage along with it, have raised ethnic entrepreneurship a significant question within the union. In the report from 2003, outlining entrepreneurship policy in European Union, it is stated that promoting immigrant entrepreneurship is one of the central goals in Europe. Also the government in Finland has risen promoting of ethnic entrepreneurship a definition of measures within immigrant policy. Despite of the fact -according to the Finnish Ministry of Trade and Industry- that entrepreneurial activity among foreign citizens in Finland has beated the entrepreneurial activity among the Finnish native population already in the late 1990Â´s, there is comparatively little knowledge about the entrepreneurship of immigrants living in Finland. The aim of this research is to examine, 1) which kind of social and economic networks are available for an immigrant entrepreneur and; 2) how s/he makes use of them within his/her entrepreneurial activities? The empirical research data consists of ten (n=10) interviews with immigrant entrepreneurs and the questionnaire. The interviews will be carried out during autumn 2009. The research method used for interviews is a narrative research approach.
Eine Pakarinen University of Kuopio Department of Social Work and Social Pedagogy Researcher, PhD student email@example.com GUIDANCE IN A MULTICULTURAL OPERATIONAL ENVIRONMENT Theme for this research is guidance in a multicultural operational environment. The topic is of current interest, because immigrantsÂ´ competences and their employment have been under a wide discussion in Finland recently. The amount of immigrants using the services of Employment Office and vocational adult education has been growing in Finland. Majority of immigrants of working age are outside of workforce. The research questions are: What kind of working orientations do the worker of labour administration and adult education have in a multicultural operational environment in the process of identifying immigrantsÂ´ competences? What kind of forms of work in guidance can be identified in a multicultural operational environment? What kind of experiences do immigrants have on the guidance they have received in labour administration and adult education? What kind of developmental needs are found in identifying the competences of immigrants? Out of the sectors of the welfare services system, workers in labour administration and adult education are central persons in identifying the competences of immigrants, and therefore, they were chosen as a target group of this study, in addition to the immigrants. A guidance situation is always an interactive one, in which a worker and an immigrant represent different cultures, values and ways of life without a common language. In this research, guidance is meant a working method and a form of a professional discussion (dialogue) by the concept of guidance, aiming at identifying immigrantsÂ´ competences.
Both quantitative and qualitative data is collected for the research: a wide national Internet inquiry, theme interviews and documents of guidance situations with immigrants, documented by labour administration workers and teachers in adult education. The primary aim of the study is to provide knowledge about the guidance in a multi-cultural operational environment in the process of identifying immigrantsÂ´ competences in labour administration and adult education.
Aini Pehkonen Senior Researcher, D.Soc.Sc University of Kuopio firstname.lastname@example.org
EXPERIENCES ON A DIVERSE WORK COMMUNITY With the EU, also the Finnish society has become more and more open. Internationality forms an essential part of the activities of both public sector and organizations. Multiculturality, a so-called pluralistic society, is challenging for integration research, because it is not possible to reach an integrated norm and value basis in it. On one hand, it is justified to consider what is meant by the concept of multiculturality in various connections. In Finland, multiculturality is often used as a synonym to internationality, describing a state in which several different cultural, language and ethnic groups are coexisting. On the other hand, by multiculturality, it is also meant political programmes in which the state or some other instance aspires to pay attention to the specific needs of different cultures and to guarantee their rights in order to create equality and prevent conflicts. (YlĂ¤nkĂ¶ 2000, 49â€“50.) Multicultural work communities face challenges, even though multiculturality would be acknowledged as a resource. Jussila et al. (1997) state that it is difficult to define the staff readiness in work communities, required by internationality, because just professional experience and competence are not enough. What is central is the impact that environment has on the employeesÂ´ action. Crucial for the work communityâ€™s ability to function and for the well-being of the staff is how the superior acts. A good reputation as a diverse work place communicates the social responsibility of the organization. In management literature, management is often divided into two subcategories: managing tasks (management) and managing people (leadership), both of which being able to be further divided according to various dimensions. In this research, I examine managing human resources.
The aim of this research is to provide knowledge about: 1) What kind of experiences the superiors have on managing human resources in a diverse work community, 2) What kind of prerequisites can be found in a multicultural work community for becoming an active member, and 3) What kind of challenges a diverse work community offers to the staff? The object of the research is multicultural work communities in Eastern Finland. The quantitative data (n=236) is collected through a mail questionnaire sent to the superiors in different fields of industry in Eastern Finland. Further, the qualitative data consists of interviews with superiors (10), employees with immigrant background (30) and native Finnish employees (10) from various fields of industry. The qualitative data is analyzed with content analysis, and the quantitative data, for its part, is analyzed with crosstabulation, regression analysis and factor analysis.