As refugees attempt to rebuild their lives in their new home countries, employment constitutes one of the critical steps in their social, cultural and economic integration. Yet, in their quest for work, refugees need to overcome a complex set of barriers that cut across multiple levels (institutional, organizational and individual), preventing refugees from gaining meaningful employment and professional advancement. In this short video, we describe the unique circumstances that refugees face in finding employment, and discuss how both businesses and individuals can help improve refugee workforce integration.

Overcoming the canvas ceiling – Promoting refugee employment from Business Co-Design on Vimeo.

More info on Canvas Ceiling can be found here: Lee, E. S., Szkudlarek, B., Nguyen, D. C., & Nardon, L. (2020). Unveiling canvas ceiling: A multidisciplinary literature review and research agenda of refugee employment and workforce integration, International Journal of Management Reviews, 22(2), 193-216.

A brief list of publications and resources linked to this research project can be found here:


Nardon, L., Zhang, H., Szkudlarek, B., & Gulanowski, D. (2020). Identity work in refugee workforce integration: The role of newcomer support organizations. Human Relations. In-press

Szkudlarek, B., Nardon, L., Osland, J., Adler, N., & Lee, E. S. (2019). When context matters: What happens to international theory when researchers study refugees. Academy of Management Perspectives. In-press.

Roy, P. A., Szkudlarek, B., & Caprar, D. V. (2020). Refugees and Cross-Cultural Management Studies. In B. Szkdularek, L. Romani, D. V. Caprar, & J. Osland (Eds.), The SAGE handbook of contemporary cross-cultural management (Ch. 30). Sage Publications.

Szkudlarek, B. (2019). Engaging business in refugee employment: the employer’s perspective. Sydney, Australia: The University of Sydney Business School:

To find practical resources on how employers can improve refugee workforce integration, please visit the following websites:

Humans Like Us (
Tent Partnership for Refugees (