Prof.dr. Sawitri Saharso

picture of Sawitri Saharso
Department of Sociology, Faculty of Social Sciences VU University
De Boelelaan 1081, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands

University of Humanistic Studies (UvH)
Kromme Nieuwegracht 29
3512 HD Utrecht, the Netherlands


  • 01/ 2008 – 01/2016: Professor in Intercultural Governance, Department of Public Governance, University of Twente, Enschede
  • 10/2006 - 02/2007: Visiting professor ‘Democracy and Difference in Europe’, Institute for Political Sciences, University of Vienna (Austria)
  • 2004 - Associate Professor in Sociology, VU University Amsterdam
  • 2000 – 2004: Lecturer in Sociology, VU University Amsterdam
  • 1992 – 2000: Lecturer in Political Sciences, VU University Amsterdam
  • 1987 – 1992: Lecturer in Sociology of Education, Centre for Race and Ethnic Studies, University of Amsterdam
  • 1983 – 1987: Lecturer in Sociology of Education, Centre for Race and Ethnic Studies, VU University Amsterdam
  • 1983 – 1984: Educational Training and Supervision Intercultural Education Berlage S.G., Amsterdam


  • 2008: Course Academic Leadership, VU University Amsterdam
  • 2005: Course Curriculum Design, Educational Centre VU University Amsterdam
  • 2004: Course Teaching in English, Language Centre VU University Amsterdam
  • 1992: PhD Sociology, University of Amsterdam
  • 1985: Didactics Social Sciences, University of Amsterdam
  • 1982: Doctoral degree in Sociology (cum laude), University of Amsterdam
  • 1978: Candidate’s degree in Sociology (cum laude), University of Amsterdam
  • 2008: Course Academic Leadership, VU University Amsterdam



Recruitment and selection of women academic staff and the impact of affirmative action measures: a comparative study of cases of selected Ethiopian universities. Funding: Nuffic (1 PhD position, Senait Haileslase Khishen)
Datacollection: desk study, focus groups and interviews.


Explaining migrant women’s low social participation: the relationship with health.
Funding: SCP and VU (1 PhD-position, Jasmijn Slootjes).
Datacollection: statistical analysis and biographical interviews.


Choice or consequence? Explaining differences in the participation of women in mathematics, science and technology (MST) in the Netherlands and Sweden.
Funding: VU, NWO Plus Fund (Mozaiek proposal was accepted, but could not be funded by NWO, 1 PhD- position, Demet Yazilitas).
Datacollection: surveys and interviews.


PROSINT (Promoting Sustainable Integration Policies) (Austria, Czech Republic, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden,Switzerland, UK).
Funding: European Commission, DG JLS (European Integration Fund), JLS/2008/EIFX/CA/1039
Datacollection: desk study and interviews.


Integrationvision ‘Colourful Almelo’ (Integratievisie ‘Kleurrijk Almelo’) Comparing the implementation of integration policies at the local level with the policies in Münster.
Funding: Provincie Overijssel, European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) in the framework of INTERREG IV A.
Datacollection: desk study, survey and interviews.


Do integration programmes promote integration? Measuring civic integration programs in Enschede.
Funding: Gemeente Enschede.
Datacollection: surveys, focus groups and interviews.


Giving care, asking care: intergenerational informal care and solidarity in immigrant families in urban Twente (Zorg dragen, zorg vragen: intergenerationele mantelzorg en solidariteit onder allochtonen in stedelijk Twente.) (Main researcher: Mariecke van den Berg)
Funding: Gemeente Enschede, Hengelo, Almelo and NICIS. Datacollection: surveys and interviews.


Equal treatment in the proactive approach of troubling youth behaviour and youth
(Gelijke behandeling in de proactieve aanpak van jeugdoverlast en jeugdcriminaliteit).
Funding: Commissie Politie en Wetenschap, Nederlandse Politieacademie. Datacollection: survey, observation and interviews.


Values, Equality, Differences in Liberal Democracies. Debates about Female
Headscarves in Europe
(Austria, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Great Britain, the Netherlands, Turkey).
Funding: Specific Targeted Research Project (STREP), EC 6. Framework
Programme. (including 1 Phd-position, Doutje Lettinga). Datacollection: desk study and frame analysis.


Suicidal behaviour among immigrant young woman in the Netherlands: the relation with gender and ethnicity.
Funding: NWO Open Competition (1 Phd-position, Diana van Bergen).
Datacollection: statistical analysis, analysis of medical case files and biographical interviews.


Culture, toleration and female autonomy in a liberal democracy.
Funding: NWO in the research programme ‘Ethics and Policy’ (2 postdoc positions).
Datacollection: desk study.


Gender, Ethnicity and Public Morality.
Funding: NWO in the research programme ‘Ethics and Policy’. (2 postdoc positions).
Datacollection: desk study.


Moroccan, Moluccan and Surinames youth responding to discrimination.
Funding: Ministry of Welfare, Public Health and Culture (WVC) (3 junior positions).
Datacollection: interviews.


Trendreport ‘Women and political power’ (2 junior positions).
Funding: Ministry of Welfare, Public Health and Culture (WVC).
Datacollection: desk study.


Study delay and drop out female students (2 junior positions).
Funding: University of Amsterdam.
Datacollection: desk study and interviews.


  • 2013 – Senait Haileslase Khishen (supervisor, University of Twente)
  • 2012 – Jasmijn Slootjes (supervisor, VU University Amsterdam)
  • 2010 – Demet Yazilitas (supervisor, VU University Amsterdam)
  • 2009 – 2014 Mariecke van den Berg (supervisor, University of Twente)
  • 2006 – 2011 Doutje Lettinga (supervisor, VU University Amsterdam)
  • 2004 – 2009 Diana van Bergen (supervisor, VU University Amsterdam)
  • 2004 – 2010 Evelyn Ersanilli (second supervisor, VU University Amsterdam)

International networks

  • Member of the IMISCOE Research Network.
  • Member of Council for European Studies (CES) research network on Immigration

International conference organization

  • Gender equality, cultural diversity: European comparisons and lessons. Two cross-European conferences jointly coordinated with Anne Phillips, London School of Economics, London, 27-28 May 2005, Amsterdam, 8-9 June 2006. Funded by the Nuffield foundation.
  • Expert seminar Ethno-Religious Cultures, Identities and Political Philosophy. Contextualised Morality: Problems and Prospects, jointly coordinated with Veit Bader, University of Amsterdam, 2-5 July 2002. Funded by KNAW, UvA and the Netherlands’ School for Research in Practical Philosophy.

Social activities

  • 2013 - Starting grant NWO in 2012 for Open Access journal Comparative Migration
  • Studies, since 2013 editor-in-chief.
  • 2011 - Consultant Gender Mainstreaming for the ‘Sustainable tourism based on natural resource management with gender balance towards women’ (Strongbow) project Ethiopia, funded by NICHE, Nuffic.
  • 2013 Talentcommittee NWO
  • 2010-2012 Mosaiccommittee NWO
  • 02/2001 - 02/2002 Member Advisory Commission 'Labour Participation Women from Ethnic
    Minorities’ (AVEM) for the Minister of the Metropolitan Cities and Integration
    Policy and the State Secretary of Social Affairs and Employment
  • 1992 - 2011 Editor Migrantenstudies

On a regular basis:

  • Consultation by the Directorate Co-ordination Emancipation Policy, Ministry of Social Affairs and the
  • Directorate Co-ordination Integration Minorities, Ministry of Law, local government
  • Consultation by social organizations (for example 2012-2013 member support committee E-module Forced Marriage FIER expert centre domestic violence)
  • Member of PhD-commissions
  • Reviewer for several international academic journals
  • Public lectures and debates, newspaper articles and interviews



  • Sunier, T., Duijvendak, J.W., Saharso, S., Steijlen (red.), F, Emancipatie en subcultuur. Sociale bewegingen in België en Nederland. Amsterdam: Instituut voor Publiek en Politiek (IPP), 2000.
  • Saharso, S. (1992) Jan en alleman. Etnische jeugd over etnische identiteit, discriminatie en vriendschap. Utrecht, Jan van Arkel, 1992 (PhD thesis.)
  • Leeman, Y. & Saharso, S., Discriminatie. Je kunt er niet omheen. Hoe Marokkaanse, Molukse en Surinaamse jongeren reageren op discriminatie. Amsterdam/Lisse, Swets & Zeitlinger, 1989. Opdrachtgever: Ministerie van WVC.


  • Christine Delhaye, Sawitri Saharso, and Victor van de Ven (2014). Immigrant Youths’Contribution to Urban Culture in Amsterdam in: Foner, Rath, Duyvendak and van Reekum (eds.) New York and Amsterdam, Immigration and the New Urban Landscape. Ch. 10, pp. 287-309. 2014 New York University. ISBN 978-0-8147-3844-3.
  • Saharso S. (2013). ‘Cultural Agency, Critical Agency: Multicultural Feminist Perspectives. In Reilly and Scriver (eds.) Religion, Gender, and the Public Sphere’. Pp. 24-30. isbn 978-0-415-84384-3. Routledge
  • Prins, Baukje and Sawitri Saharso (2013), Ch. 31 ‘Multiculturalism and Identity’, in: G. Waylen, K. Celis, J. Kantola & S. Laurel Weldon (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Gender and Politics. Oxford University Press, Oxford 2013, pp 781-802. isbn 978-0-19-975145-7.
  • Saharso, S. (2011). Reaction to Duyvendak, JW, Feeling at home in the nation? Understanding Dutch nostalgia. In H. Harbers (Ed.), Strangeness and Familiarity. Global Unity and Diversity in Human Rights and Democracy (pp. 97-99).
  • L. Hadj-Abdou, S. Rosenberger, S. Saharso and B. Siim (2011), The limits of populism (ch. 7) in Politics, Religion and Gender. Framing and regulating the veil by Sieglinde Rosenbverger and Birgit Sauer (eds.); pp. 132-149; Routledge isbn 978-0-415-56148-8.
  • S. Saharso (2011), Conclusion, in Politics, Religion and Gender. Framing and regulating the veil by Sieglinde Rosenbverger and Birgit Sauer (eds.); pp. 205-216; Routledge isbn 978-0-415-56148-8.

Publications international (selection)

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Academic publications Dutch (selection)

  • Saharso, Sawitri & Peter Scholten (2013). Comparative Migration Studies: an introduction. In: CMS vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 1-6.
  • Berg, M, van den, S. Saharso en J.S. Svensson (2012). Zorg dragen, zorg vragen: intergenerationele mantelzorg en solidariteit onder allochtone mantelzorgers in stedelijk Twente. Den Haag, Nicis.
  • Svensson, J.S., H. Sollie en S. Saharso (2012). Proactief handhaven en Gelijk Behandelen. Amsterdam, Reed Business.
  • Saharso, S. & P. Scholten (2010), ‘De integratie van ‘nieuwe Nederlanders’: tussen nationaal beleid en lokale realiteit.’ Bestuurswetenschappen 64(3), pp. 105-116.

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  • Leijenaar, M. & Saharso, S. (1983), Vrouwen en politieke macht. Trendreport over vrouwenstudies en emancipatie-onderzoek. Opdrachtgever: Ministerie van WVC, Stimuleringsgroep Emancipatie-onderzoek. Den Haag, Staatsuitgeverij.
  • Saharso, S. & Westerbeek, J. (1982), De precaire balans. Een reconstructie van de ervaringen van vrouwelijke studenten met studeren, achterraken en uitvallen. Opdrachtgever: UvA, Dienst Studentenwelzijnszorg.
  • Feeling at home in the nation? Understanding Dutch nostalgia. J.W. Duyvendak. Comments by Sawitri Saharso. In H.Harbers (ed.), Strangeness and Familiarity. Global Unity and Diversity in Human Rights and Democracy. Proceedings International Conference Groningen, NL. October 21-22 2010, pp. 97-99.