Girls Growing Up in Changing Times and Places (2017–2019) is an ARC-funded DECRA project by Signe Ravn (UniMelb) on the everyday lives and imagined futures of young women who have left the mainstream school system before finishing Year 12. The project is designed as a longitudinal study, interviewing the young women up to five times over a period of around two years, and drawing on different creative methods in each of these steps. The overall aim of the study is to investigate how pathways towards adulthood take shape at the micro level and it explores the following questions:
- How do processes of potential marginalisation unfold at the everyday level and over time amongst girls who have left mainstream education early?
- How do these girls imagine and relate to their futures and future selves and which resources can they draw on in realising these futures?
- How does ‘the local’ play into the girls’ sense of belonging and imagined futures?
The project focuses on three different locations – two on the Melbourne urban fringe and one in a regional area two and a half hours from Melbourne. All three locations are characterised by high (youth) unemployment, labour markets undergoing change as a result of economic restructuring and deindustrialisation, distance to tertiary education institutions, and a ‘problem’ reputation. A key aim of the project is to investigate how the ‘histories of place’ translate through to the individual level in terms of the participants’ imagined futures and imagined selves.
More information on the project will be available soon on the Girls Growing Up website, linked below.