The proposed paper will challenge ethical and methodological issues in working with so-called vulnerable youth. Today, research in different youth-domains focusses on doing research on and with vulnerable categories of youth. While empowering and voicing methodologies and strategies are emphasized, power-structures between researcher and participants are exposed and a movement from youth as objects to youth as subjects takes place, terms as vulnerable-, disadvantaged-, at-risk- and socially excluded youth still dominate scientific and public studies and debates. When research mainly focusses on the same groups and in an excessive way uses terms with a vulnerable or victim-based connotation, processes of labelling can take place and more harm can be done (e.g. self-fulfilling prophecy). Consequently, researchers should be cautious in using these loaded terms. From a (children’s-)rights-perspective point of view, we should ask ourselves if this is in line with our responsibilities as researchers towards participants of research on one hand and youngsters on the other one. Therefore, this proposal will focus on the use of such labels in research, the issues they produce and explore possible ways to tackle them in a rather reflexive way.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEuropean Society of Criminology, 19th Annual Congress 2019 - Ghent
Number of pages2
Publication statusPublished - 19 Sep 2019

    Research areas

  • Vulnerable youth, Ethical challenges, Labels, Categorisation

ID: 49612360