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New Em@ncipatory Landscapes?: Young People With Intellectual Disabilities, Internet Use and Identification Processes
University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division of Social Work and Social Pedagogy. (BUV)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6202-4196
University West, Department of Social and Behavioural Studies, Division of Psychology, Pedagogy and Sociology. (BUV)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3328-6538
Malmö Högskola, Malmö, Sverige.
2017 (English)In: Advances in Social Work, ISSN 1527-8565, Vol. 18, no 2, p. 645-662Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Although research on young people's identification processes on the Internet is a growing field, few studies illustrate conditions for young people with intellectual disabilities (ID). Previous studies have shown that young people with ID are worried about being marginalized, and that many in fact are lonelier than other young people. Internet and social networking sites might be of vital importance as a space for exploring alternative and less stigmatized identities. This article reports findings from individual interviews with 27 young people with ID in Sweden. The transcribed interviews were analyzed using a thematic content analysis. A prominent finding concerned the informants being well aware of both risks and opportunities using Internet and Social Networking Sites. Consequently, the more they interacted with non-disabled peers, the more they experienced negative consequences of Internet use. These circumstances rather lead to downsizing than upsizing Internet use, and less participation on Social Networking Sites. The experiences of the informants are discussed in a conceptual framework of social identity, participation, and emancipation. We recommend that social work practitioners reflect upon the ways that support can be arranged in order to empower young people with ID to participate on the Internet.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Indianapolis: Indiana University School of Social Work , 2017. Vol. 18, no 2, p. 645-662
Keywords [en]
Intellectual disability; Internet use; participation; identification processes; social networking sites (SNS)
National Category
Social Work
Research subject
Child and Youth studies; SOCIAL SCIENCE, Social work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-11823DOI: 10.18060/21428OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hv-11823DiVA, id: diva2:1172608
Available from: 2018-01-10 Created: 2018-01-10 Last updated: 2018-01-10

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