How a society supports its most vulnerable individuals can serve as a barometer of social inclusion. By engaging in previous debates on how the influx and resettlement of refugees and asylum seekers challenge European educational spaces, this study investigates asylum seekers’ non-engagement and non-participation in one engaged learning project in Finland (the KOTO project – Kotoutuminen taidolla ja taiteella [Integration through Arts and Skills]). A mixed methods approach with convergent design was adopted for the study, which combines qualitative data on asylum seekers’ attributions of their participatory barriers with quantitative data on the relationship between asylum seekers’ demographics and the quantified data on their participatory barriers. The study illuminates how asylum seekers’ liminality, along with the project-based barriers, generates non-engagement and non-participation in the educative pre-integrational programmes in a reception centre context.

DOI: 10.1177/14749041221142419
ISSN: 1474-9041