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Susanne Kreitz-Sandberg

About me

Susanne Kreitz-Sandberg is Associate Professor in International and Comparative Education, a field she has been working in since the 1990’s.

Presently Susanne is leading a project founded by the Swedish Reserach Council "International Comparative Perspectives on School Attendance Problems". The purpose of this study is to investigate national, organisational and individual dimensions of school attendance problems (SAP) among 15 to 17-year-olds in Sweden, the UK, Germany and Japan. The project uses a mixed method approach combining quantitative analysis of large-scale data on the national level with qualitative case studies on the organisational and individual level. More information about the study you can find here.

Susanne has engaged into research and teaching in universities and research institutions in Germany, Japan and Sweden. Context knowledge is an important tool for understanding and critically evaluating how education systems and pedagogical processes develop in relation to social conditions. That’s why Susanne has conducted many of her international comparative studies in Sweden, Germany and Japan. In each of these countries she has lived, studied and worked for over a decade.



Susanne Kreitz-Sandberg’s major research foci are in the field of comparative education as well as in the context of gender and education (e.g. Kreitz-Sandberg, 2013, 2015, 2016) and she has applied a broad range of methodological approaches, both quantitative and qualitative in her international and comparative research.

Selection of research projects and selected publications:

  • Gender inclusion in higher education
  • Multi-professional collaboration in schools
  • School attendance in international comparison
  • Youth in comparative perspectives
  • Mathematics teaching in Japanese primary schools
  • Other recent or former publications



Susanne Kreitz-Sandberg has a broad experience of university teaching and education administration. As a senior lecturer, she has been teaching on all levels of higher education, from introductory courses and MA-courses to PhD-studies. Presently she is mainly teaching in the Master’s Programme for International and Comparative Education, which is is also coordinating.

Susanne teaches the course “Hypothesis, Action and Design” (together with Max Scheja and Marianne Teräs) for PhD-students. She had the privilege to be a co-advisor for Anette Nord’s Ph.D. study on teaching CPR-training in secondary school (PhD 2017 at Linköping University) and Maria Sparf and her study on Programing in Science Centers (Lic. 2021 at LiU). Here at IPD she is engaged into PhD supervision of Nathalie Dewan (together with Camilla Thunborg and Ali Reza Majlesi) and Adrian Rexgren (together Meeri Hellstén and Gustav Lymer).

Susanne Kreitz-Sandberg was earlier director of studies for the Master’s Programme in Pedagogical Practices, Outdoor Education and Special Needs Education at the University of Linköping where she gathered well-grounded experience with university administration (2009-2017). At Linköping she also worked as a gender lecturer (2008-2017; see Swedish version of my presentation).

Research projects


A selection from Stockholm University publication database

  • Design for learning programming

    2022. Maria Sparf, Håkan Löfgren, Susanne Kreitz-Sandberg. NorDiNa 18 (1), 6-22


    Programming recently became mandatory in Swedish compulsory schools (age group 7-16); this article contributes to our understanding of novice learners’ different approaches when programming. The study builds on observations and informal conversations during programming lessons at three Swedish science centres. At the time of the study, science centres already had experience of programming education as they offered courses for pupils. This was used as a complement to teaching at compulsory school. We ap-ply a design-for-learning perspective to help us understand how contextual aspects influence what novice pupils do and how they design their learning during programming lessons. During the analysis process, we combine thematic analysis with the Learning Design Sequence (LDS) model. We identify five qualitati-vely different approaches that pupils take to solve programming problems: mathematically, trial and er-ror, step-by-step, routine as well as aesthetic. Each of these approaches allows pupils to use and practice different abilities that are important for programming. We discuss how these abilities can be compared to computational thinking (CT). The study provides an insight how pupils are involved in designing their own learning when using their abilities to solve programming assignments. 

    Read more about Design for learning programming
  • Global Demands - Local Practices

    2021. Susanne Kreitz-Sandberg, Elina Lahelma. Nordic Journal of Comparative and International Education (NJCIE) 5 (1), 50-68


    Gender equality is a global aim that has been presented in numerous documents. However, teacher education programs in many countries still lack sustainable strategies for working towards gender equality in education. Working successfully in this area may promote more sustainable practices in schools to reach gender-fair societies. The Nordic countries are known for pro-active gender policies and they provide interesting cases for investigating achievements and struggles in the field. The purpose of this article is, from an international comparative perspective, to explore the rationales and practices when working with issues of gender equality in Finnish and Swedish teacher education and to reflect on related concepts. We describe, analyse and compare local practices, theoretical frameworks and challenges by revisiting gender and teacher education research and equality projects from the 1980s up to today. The comparative methodology chosen facilitates understanding examples from two neighbouring countries, illustrating different ways to develop policies and strategies. Local actors not only follow global claims to work with gender and equality in teacher education but also play an active role and contribute to these discourses. Our study suggests that gender equality cannot be achieved overnight; appropriate strategies need to be negotiated constantly in specific national and institutional contexts at universities and teacher education institutions.

    Read more about Global Demands - Local Practices
  • Gender inclusion 2.0

    2019. Susanne Kreitz-Sandberg. Gender – Diversity – Intersectionality, 175-190


    The purpose of this paper is to discuss possibilities for working systematically with gender inclusion in adult education. The paper describes programme development in a Swedish folk-high-school teacher-education programme. The paper investigates how gender inclusion can be part of adult education and especially teacher training for educators in this field. As an example, the paper investigates a folk-highschoolteacher-education programme at a Swedish university where norm-critical perspectives are being introduced into university teaching. This is a relevant field for the European Society for Research on the Education of Adults (ESREA) and, specifically, the Network on Gender and Adult Learning as it touches on gender in adult educationand on how we can train adult educators in higher education with regards to gender and diversity.

    Read more about Gender inclusion 2.0
  • Die Entwicklung der sozialwissenschaftlichen Diskussion über Schulabsentismus in Japan

    2019. Susanne Kreitz-Sandberg, Vincent B. Lesch. Japan 2019, 262-298


    The Development of Social Science Discussions on School Absenteeism in Japan: New Trends or an Old Problem?

    The aim of this paper is to summarize the development of the social science discourse on school absenteeism (futôkô) in Japan and to analyze it in the context of the debate on social inequality in society (kakusa shakai). This systematic literature review will answer the question how the issue of school absenteeism in Japan has developed since the postwar period up to the present. School absenteeism has been a subject of much discussion in Japan since the 1960s, and this paper discusses whether recent research on school absenteeism is merely examining this phenomenon from old perspectives or identifying new trends that are also interesting from an international perspective. As a background we clarify central Japanese terms in research on absenteeism in Japan since the post-war period and describe how school refusal has been considered a school and youth problems since the 1980s. The article builds on a methodology that is often referred to as "desk research" and which has undergone a renaissance under the concept of systematic literature studies, where search strategies and the presentation of the results are formalized in order to ensuring the transparency and reliability of the information (Eriksson Barajas, Forsberg & Wengstöm (2013: 24, 83). We focus our research on Japanese and international publications of the last decade. The evaluation of a total of 22 selected articles (including journal articles and book chapters) revealed important topics, such as new potential risk groups and solution strategies. The articles we found show absenteeism and high school drop-out are more frequent for disadvantaged groups in connection to poverty, migration, sexual identity and psychosocial factors. Interestingly, in the literature, connections between futôkô and social withdrawal (hikikomori) have been described as an overlapping but still different phenomena. Another trend that has been highlighted in the literature is the role of various new actors in and around the school system. Although school absenteeism may, in one way, appear as an old problem in Japanese research, the role of new players in the education system and the diversification of the Japanese school landscape, are becoming more apparent in response to persisted high numbers of cases of absenteeism.

    Read more about Die Entwicklung der sozialwissenschaftlichen Diskussion über Schulabsentismus in Japan
  • In search of social sustainability

    2018. Susanne Kreitz-Sandberg.


    This presentation will conceptualise on the issue of sustainability more generally and particularly in relation to its social role for providing equity in and through education. The paper frames the discussion within the UN Sustainable Development Goals and their accomplishment in and for educational practice. The purpose is to explore how teacher education can address the role of equity and equality in educational institutions in the context of social sustainable pedagogical processes.

    The paper takes an international comparative perspective and presents some Swedish cases in the light of Nordic discussions gender and equity in the field of education and it will specifically touch on the role teacher education can play in this context. Equity, diversity and equality are framed in an intersectional perspective, where gender is understood within the scope of other parameters of inequality as ethnicity, sexual identity, which are also important dimensions of identity.

    The paper will analyse specific examples that will be chosen from three teacher education programmes in Sweden, one for pre-school teachers, one for teachers in leisure time centres and one for teachers in adult education. The study builds on ethnographic observations and document analyses of programme curriculums, course of studies, study guidelines and other documents at a Swedish university. These cases are being discussed in the light of other Nordic studies and in with inspirations from a norm-critical theoretical perspective.

    The results can elucidate that working with gender and equity can be organised systematically within programme studies at university. The results are re-examined in relation to their importance for building social sustainable structures in institutions for education within the education system.

    Read more about In search of social sustainability

Show all publications by Susanne Kreitz-Sandberg at Stockholm University