Is ethnicity a meaningful category of employment policies for Roma? A comparative case study of Hungary and Spain

A new article authored by CPS Research Affiliates Vera Messing and Abel Beremenyi has been published in the journal of Ethnic and Racial Studies.


This paper aims to inquire into the potential of active labour market policies (LMP) to reach out to unemployed Roma population in Hungary and in Spain. While in Hungary unemployed Roma people are mainly thought to be reached through mainstream measures, Spain represents a more complex regime with an emphasis on ethnically targeted programmes. Our analysis draws on a wider comparative research project (NEUJOBS) conducted between 2011-2015 and provides an insight into how LMP function locally for unemployed Roma. We conclude that there are two intersecting challenges regarding the success of LMP that aim to influence the employment situation of the Roma: the targeting strategies and the quality and complexity of the programmes' design. Our empirical data suggest that both aspects need to be given equal attention in order to promote the inclusion of the Roma into the labour market.

Keywords: Roma, employment, ethnic targeting, mainstreaming equality, labour market inclusion, active labour market policies

The article is available at the Taylor and Francis Online.