Employability among university graduates in Luxembourg: the role of sociolinguistic repertoires (EMPLOY-LUX)

PhD dissertation by Oksana Domina, 2017 - 2021

As a PhD candidate, Oksana Domina has been working in the Centre for Childhood and Youth (CCY) at the University of Luxembourg since 2017. Oksana is particularly interested in the role of sociolinguistic repertoires and their impact on employability of university graduates in Luxembourg. Her PhD dissertation—a monography—evolves this research interest in the context of Luxembourgish society.

Valorisation

In order to get to know Oksana and her PhD dissertation, the Digital Documentation and Research Centre (DDRC) invited her for an interview in January 2021. Please, read on below:

Oksana, what motivated you to start your PhD on the role of sociolinguistic repertoires of university graduates in Luxembourg?

I started my PhD project in 2017, after finishing the Master programme in Learning and Communication in Multilingual and Multicultural Contexts here at the University of Luxembourg. In the course of my master’s degree, I got interested in topics such as languages and linguistic repertoires, youth lifestyles, employment and employability, and labour markets. So, I decided to do research at the PhD level in a field related to these topics.

What does your PhD dissertation aim to achieve?

My current dissertation is titled Employability among university graduates in Luxembourg: the role of sociolinguistic repertoires (EMPLOY-LUX). It aims to investigate the role of sociolinguistic repertoires in relation to employability. I am conducting this project under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Robin Samuel.

To date, little is known about the interplay between sociolinguistic repertoires and employability. ‘Sociolinguistic repertoires’ can be understood as the collection of linguistic, personal and social resources. The main goal of my dissertation is, hence, to find out how sociolinguistic repertoires interact in shaping young people’s employability in Luxembourg. This is particularly relevant to Luxembourg given its multicultural and multilingual diversity.

"The main goal of my dissertation is, hence, to find out how sociolinguistic repertoires interact in shaping young people’s employability in Luxembourg."
Oksana Domina
PhD candidate

Which type of research design helps you answering your research questions?

The project employs a qualitative design. Qualitative interviews, with both employers and university graduates, are used to explore the interplay between sociolinguistic repertoires and employability. I think that taking interviews with both of these groups will help to understand better the overall perspective on employability in Luxembourg. The results of the project can be useful for the rapidly transforming and digitalizing economy of Luxembourg.

Talking about your motivation to start researching sociolinguistic repertoires, are you a language fan yourself?

That’s a good guess! (Laughs) Yes, I do like studying and speaking different languages: Russian and Ukrainian are my native languages, I am proficient in English and have an advanced level of Chinese. My German and French are on an intermediate level, while my Luxembourgish is still rather basic—but I am working on that.

Interview conducted by Moritz Höpner in January 2021

Supervision

Oksana Domina’s PhD dissertation is supervised by Prof. Dr. Robin Samuel. Having graduated from the University of Luxembourg with a Master’s degree in Learning and Communication in Multilingual and Multicultural Contexts, Oksana joined the University’s Centre for Childhood and Youth Research (CCY) in 2017. Oksana was awarded with an individual grant of the Luxembourg National Research Fund (FNR-AFR) in 2017 in order to conduct this project until 2021.