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Experiences of policing among ethnic minority youth in the Nordic countries (EPEN)

The project runs from the 1st of October 2016 – the 1st of December 2017 and is supported by the Scandinavian Research Council for Criminology (NSfK).

Interest in ethnic minority youth has grown in the Nordic countries with an increasing focus by the media, political commentators and law enforcement on delinquent activities and crime among this group of young people.

At the same time researchers have highlighted the potentially harmful effects of targeted police practices based on ‘ethnic profiling’ leading to ‘stop and search’ procedures on relationships between ethnic minority youth and the police. However, little research in the Nordic countries has examined the experiences of ethnic minority youth themselves and their perceptions of policing practices.

The aim of this qualitative project therefore, is to examine and compare the experiences of ethnic minority young people in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden in their day-to-day dealings with the police. In the project we will interview in total 80-100 young people mainly living in deprived areas in the four Nordic countries.

EPEN is a collaboration between the following partners:

  • Centre for Alcohol and Drug Research, Aarhus University (host institution): Professor Torsten Kolind (PI); Professor Geoffrey Hunt; post doc Mie Birk Haller.
  • Faculty of Law, University of Turku: Professor Anne Alvesalo-Kuusi; post doc Elsa Saarikkomäki
  • Norwegian Police University College, Oslo: Associate professor Gunnar Thomassen; post doc Randi Solhjell
  • Department of Sociology, Lund University: Profesor Malin Åkerström; associate professor David Wästerfors; lecturer Veronika Burcar.