Constructing race and ethnicity: Category-making in public policy and administration – the cases of the US and Netherlands
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The US federal government named and defined its demographic categories for the first time in 1977, in the Office of Management and Budget Directive No. 15. The Netherlands also defines and uses “identity” categories in registering residents. Empirical research looking at definitions, census and registration form categories, and contemporary policy and administrative practices raises questions as to the meanings of “race” and “ethnicity” in actual use. What, for instance, is being conveyed when a Netherlands medical clinic registration form, asking a question on “ethnic origin,” provides as possible answers “Caucasian,” “Negro,” and “Asian”? This talk draws on prior and current empirical research in examining the work that state-created categories do (Yanow 2003, Yanow and van der Haar 2013, Yanow, van der Haar, and Völke 2013).
- R & P Seminar