Sarah Richard, a research lecturer at EM Strasbourg and a member of HuManiS won the award for the best paper in the “Gender, Race & Diversity in Organizations” track at the EURAM Congress held in Lisbon from June 26 - 28, 2019 in Portugal.
“It's time to leave the nest, but don't fall!” Disabled individuals dealing with the “limbo risk” when transitioning from student to work life.
Abstract: A qualitative study based on 20 semi-structured interviews is used to examine the disabled individual liminal experience of transitioning from school to work life. In a context where disabled people are discriminated against, this study intends to highlight how students with disability deal with the limbo risk, which consists in being stuck in a state of “no longer a student but never a professional”, when intending to integrate the workplace. Students in transition were interviewed to relate their transitioning experience. The findings reveal that disabled individuals in transition use four strategies to counterfeit the limbo risk. Strategies consist in claiming their disabled identity, alternating between disabled and valid identity, concealing or finding a disability congruent environment. The displayed strategies include identity threat mechanisms such as identity protection and identity restructuring responses. This research contributes to the liminality literature by extending recent works introducing the “limbo” concept and shows disabled individuals' reaction to that risk. It also contributes to the identity threat literature showing how disabled individuals combine several identity threat responses and use them as resources to fight against the limbo.