Three master’s theses nominated for SER Thesis Prize 2022

The three nominations:

  • ‘Made to be unheard of, uninvolved, insensitive and unhealthy. An Analysis of the Performativity of Community Based Health Promotion ‘ by Ilse Dijkstra
  • ‘Respected doctor in Syria, unemployed refugee in the Netherlands: An analysis of the integration of medically educated Syrian refugees in the Dutch medical field by Julia Postmes
  • ‘Duty of care and pension funds: points of attention for the new pension system’ by Sabine Verbunt

The two honorable mentions:

  • ‘Almere, a city without waste. A new insight into the (administrative) settlement of waste dumping ‘ from Fariesha Soebratie
  • Can the female garment worker speak? Female workers ‘voices in Bangladesh during COVID-19 pandemic’ from Anna Renfrew

Every year, SER awards the SER Thesis Award for best master’s thesis in academic and higher professional education. The thesis must be about a socio-economic topic or one of SER’s other areas of work.

Ad Winner SER Special Price

The jury will announce at a public council meeting on June 17 the winner of the SER Thesis Award 2022. The winner will receive 2000 euros. The winner can also speak to the council meeting and spend a day with the chairman of the SER. The other nominees each receive 500 euros.

Topics nominated dissertations

Nomination: ‘Made to be unheard of, uninvolved, unresponsive and unhealthy. An Analysis of the Performativity of Community Based Health Promotion ‘ by Ilse Dijkstra (European Studies on Society, Science and Technology, Maastricht University)

Large health disparities between low- and high-income neighborhoods in the Netherlands are an urgent problem. Ilse Dijkstra’s dissertation examines a long-term society-based approach to reducing obesity among children in low socio-economic neighborhoods. The goal of a community-based approach is to use the knowledge and skills of local people to improve their qualities, position and improve their health. However, her analysis shows that this approach – unintentionally – does the opposite: The psychologising and individualizing language and tools used lead to residents of these neighborhoods being made an uninterested and unmotivated target group. Ilse concludes that this community approach reproduces what she is trying to counter: unhealthy neighborhoods.

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‘Respected doctor in Syria, unemployed refugee in the Netherlands: An analysis of the integration of medically educated Syrian refugees in the Dutch medical field’ by Julia Postmes (Healthcare management, Erasmus University Rotterdam)

Syrian refugee doctors must go through a comprehensive assessment procedure – often followed by mandatory internships – before they are allowed to work as a doctor in the Netherlands. Julia Postmes analyzed their experiences during this integration process through Bourdieu’s capital theory. Despite their education and work experience in Syria, it proved to be a long and difficult process. The problems experienced seem to be exacerbated by the current setup of the procedure: Participants by definition lose their specialist qualifications in this standard course, and self-study is paramount. Julia advises to facilitate the integration process by facilitating pre-assessment internships and creating specific procedures for specialists so that they can maintain their specialization.

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‘Duty of care and pension funds: points of attention for the new pension system’ by Sabine Verbunt (Finance Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam)

After several years of negotiations between the social partners and the government, the Dutch pension system is being reformed. Pensioners will soon have to deal with more risks and greater freedom of choice. Different care obligations oblige pension funds to take into account the interests of their participants. Although it is certain that the interpretation of the duty of care will change as a result of the system change, it is not yet clear how this will (or should) be fulfilled. With the help of multidisciplinary insight drawn from behavioral and communication science as well as from financial technology, Sabine Verbunt has answered the research question: what points of attention should pension funds take into account when fulfilling their care obligations in the new pension system?

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Jury SER Special Prize

The jury consists of:

  • Ed Nijpels (Crown Member SER)
  • Tuur Elzinga (chairman of FNV, also vice-chairman of SER)
  • Ingrid Thijssen (Chairman VNO-NCW, also Vice-Chairman SER)

Note to editors
More information at Marianne den Boef, t 06 86818730 or 0644244817; m.den.boef@ser.nl.

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