Principles And Practice in Approaches to Deracialisation: Countering the Social Dynamics of Contemporary Racialisation in Brazil, South Africa, Sweden and the United Kingdom


Swedish Research Council

Project type


The overall aim of this three-year project is to assess the nature and extent of the efforts required to counter the contemporary dynamics of racialisation across Sweden, South Africa, Brazil, and the United Kingdom, as well as explore the role and activities of national human rights institutions (NHRIs) in this process. The project brings together a team of international experts in the field in order to compare the priorities and effectiveness of current strategic approaches employed in each national context and analyses their relationalities.

By connecting these cases within a common theoretical and methodological framework, the project contributes new theoretical knowledge on racialisation and deracialisation by focusing on the role of the key social and political mechanisms involved. It thus produces a new data set concerning contemporary interventions and institutions and establishes new principles and practices for national projects of deracialisation. Emphasis is placed on the increasing importance of NHRIs in struggles against racism in the particular national constellations where they are active insofar as they comprise a vital element in the development of strategic approaches to countering racism on the national level and in fostering deracialisation.

The project critically examines the current international processes of monitoring racialisation that have been conducted by such agencies as the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), World Conference against Racism (WCAR), the European Union (EU), the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI), and the European Network against Racism (ENAR), including the strategic approaches to deracialisation that have been adopted.

It maps the contours of contemporary racialisation in the selected national contexts of Sweden, South Africa, Brazil, and the United Kingdom as a starting point; assesses the discursive, policy and legal opportunity structures and formations of current state policies, strategies, and interventions for the deracialisation of civil society. The project builds upon cross-national learning and engages in a process of knowledge exchange in order to establish pathways to impact.

Ian Law, Projektforskare, Södertörns University

Ioanna Blasko, Södertörn University

Shirley Tate, Professor, Leeds Beckett University

Joaze Bernardino Costa, Professor, University of Brasilia

Research area / geographic area

Social Sciences Sociology Politics, Economy and the Organisation of Society Europe

Project time

2017 — 2020


Facebook Mail Twitter

Page updated