28 - 31 August 2013
Torino, Italy

RN35 – Sociology of Migration

Coordinator:
Elisabeth Scheibelhofer elisabeth.scheibelhofer@univie.ac.at University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria

The current political, social, and economic crisis challenges us to think about the manifold relations between migration, inequalities, identities, and politics and how they are being reconfigured in the current European and global context. In line with the general theme of the 11th ESA Conference, we invite presentations under the session topics listed below. We further invite paper proposals that relate to the general theme of the ESA Conference but do not readily fit into one of the specific sessions. Abstracts should be no longer than 250 words and need to be submitted through the ESA online submission tool no later than 1 February 2013. Please indicate the preferred session.

Sessions

  • 01RN35 Migration and Social Transformation Revisited: In Search for Integrative Approaches
    Chair: Anna Amelina <anna.amelina@uni-bielefeld.de>, University of Bielefeld Chair: Bruno Meeus <Bruno.Meeus@ees.kuleuven.be>, KU Leuven

    There is a lacuna within the body of literature addressing migration and mobility in the European context. On the one hand, interdisciplinary European studies seek to critically analyze the process of European supra-nationalization, the enlargement of the EU and more recently the European financial crisis. However, they do this without explicitly addressing the changing patterns of migration and mobility in this European space. On the other hand, there is a plethora of studies about current mobility patterns in Europe. Only few of them, however, relate migration research directly to the above-mentioned processes or, more generally, fundamental political and societal transformations. Taking this lacuna as a starting point the session pursues three objectives. First, it aims at discussing the reasons for this theoretical and empirical void. Second, it attempts to examine the adequate theoretical tools to understand the interconnecting dynamics between migratory flows and general societal transformations (including supra-nationalization, the formation of transnational spaces as well as economic crises). And, third, it seeks to discuss empirical findings on current migration and mobility flows within the EU as well as within non-EU Europe from a perspective of social transformation.

  • 02RN35 Human Rights Based Approaches to Migration Policies
    Chair: Christof Roos <christof.roos@sfb597.uni-bremen.de>; University of Bremen

    European and national level migration policies combine liberal and restrictive components with respect to policy areas such as immigration, asylum, external borders and integration. However, the trend at both levels has been towards increasingly restrictive migration policies that often neglect migrants’ human rights in order to protect national and European interests. This session seeks to challenge these interest based perspectives by exploring human rights based approaches to migration policies. Paper topics to be considered for this session include:

    • Conceptual bases for a human rights based approach to migration policies
    • Specific human rights based approaches to various migration policy areas
    • Empirical case-studies of human rights based migration policies
    • Scenarios to achieve human rights based migration policies, or address obstacles to this goal
  • 03RN35 Socio-Anthropological Approaches in Migration Research
    Chair: Catherine Delcroix <cadelcroix@wanadoo.fr>, University of Strasbourg Chair: Daniel Bertaux <daniel.bertaux@misha.fr>, Centre national de la recherche scientifique Chair: Elise Pape <elisa.pape@misha.fr>, University of Francfort and Strasbourg

    Combining sociological methods such as life stories and family case histories with ethnographic observations and case studies opens the way to rich perspectives in migration research. The historical dimension of social phenomena is brought back into the picture, albeit “from below” (Hammoudi). The need to identify what is of general relevance in one’s observations leads to theorizations that are firmly grounded (Burawoy). In migration research, a multi-sited socio-anthropological research (Marcus), partly conducted in the migrants’ country of origin, seems particularly helpful. This session calls for papers which, based on examples of empirical research, discuss the following questions: How does an extended participation in the life of individuals and families contribute to modify the researcher? How does it influence the forthcoming theorization process? How can one develop links between migration research and postcolonial studies?

  • 04RN35 Socio-Anthropological Research
    Chair: Catherine Delcroix <cadelcroix@wanadoo.fr>, University of Strasbourg Chair: Daniel Bertaux <daniel.bertaux@misha.fr>, Centre national de la recherche scientifique Chair: Elise Pape <elisa.pape@misha.fr>, University of Francfort and Strasbourg

    Combining sociological methods such as life stories and family case histories with ethnographic observations and case studies opens the way to rich perspectives in migration research. The historical dimension of social phenomena is brought back into the picture, albeit “from below” (Hammoudi). The need to identify what is of general relevance in one’s observations leads to theorizations that are firmly grounded (Burawoy). In migration research, a multi-sited socio-anthropological research (Marcus), partly conducted in the migrants’ country of origin, seems particularly helpful. This session calls for papers which, based on examples of empirical research, discuss the following questions: How does an extended participation in the life of individuals and families contribute to modify the researcher? How does it influence the forthcoming theorization process? How can one develop links between migration research and postcolonial studies?

  • 05RN35 Diasporic Translations: Reformulating Ethnic and Political Identities in Diaspora
    Chair: Ipek Demir <id34@leicester.ac.uk>, University of Leicester

    This session will focus on the way in which ethnic and national identity are revived and translated by diasporic groups. How do diasporas recover, salvage and render ‘correct’ forms and aspects of their ethnic identity? What are various ‘losses’ and ‘gains’ in the salvaging and translation of ethnic and national identity? What is included, and what is excluded? How do diasporic revivals and translated representations foster interactions with other diasporic groups in the new home, including with the host community? How do these refigure and transform identity? Moreover, how do these translations help change and refigure relationships with the country of origin? Papers which focus on belonging, ethnic and national identity, transnationalism and diaspora, from either a theoretical or empirical perspective, are welcome.

  • 06RN35 Diasporic Translations: Reformulating Ethnic and Political Identities in Diaspora
    Chair: Ipek Demir <id34@leicester.ac.uk>, University of Leicester

    This session will focus on the way in which ethnic and national identity are revived and translated by diasporic groups. How do diasporas recover, salvage and render ‘correct’ forms and aspects of their ethnic identity? What are various ‘losses’ and ‘gains’ in the salvaging and translation of ethnic and national identity? What is included, and what is excluded? How do diasporic revivals and translated representations foster interactions with other diasporic groups in the new home, including with the host community? How do these refigure and transform identity? Moreover, how do these translations help change and refigure relationships with the country of origin? Papers which focus on belonging, ethnic and national identity, transnationalism and diaspora, from either a theoretical or empirical perspective, are welcome.

  • 07RN35 Who are Those Europeans who Leave Europe?
    Chair: Catherine de Wenden <dewenden@ceri-sciences-po.org>, Centre national de la recherche scientifique

    The economic crisis had led several categories of Europeans without jobs to looking for opportunities in emerging countries (Brasil, India,China) or US, Canada, Australia in order to meet more chances to find a job corresponding to their qualifications. This population is however diversified: Young highly qualified Europeans, double-nationality sons of immigrants coming back to the country of their parents (German Turkish in Turkey, French Moroccans in Morocco), young Europeans seeking entrepreneurship in countries where they master the language (Portuguese to Brasil, Spanish to Latin America, Irish to Australia) and immigrants settled in Europe seeking jobs in countries close to their networks and cultural background (Ecuadorians of Spain going to another Latin American country than theirs). Field studies, macro-sociological analysis, typologies from early made researches on life stories, monographs of European countries involved would illustrate this new trend, highlighting the turn of southern Mediterranean countries from emigration countries to immigration countries in the nineties again to new emigration countries now.

  • 08RN35 What Kind of “Turn” for Migration Research? Methodological Challenges in Times of Crisis, Critique, and ChangeTRANSNATIONALISM
    Chair: Kenneth Horvath <kenneth.horvath@univie.ac.at>, University of Education Karlsruhe Chair: Rossalina Latcheva <rossalina.latcheva@fra.europa.eu>, European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights, Vienna

    The proposed session takes the global economic and political crisis as starting point for a critical re­flection on prevalent methodological tendencies in migration research. The session relates ongoing methodological discussions to recent societal developments. What kind of “turn” in migration research, if any, is needed in the face of the current developments? What methodological challenges arise? Do we have the means to analyse migration-related social inequalities without losing identity formation and identity politics from sight? Considering the “transnational turn” of migration research over the past decades: How can we include the nation-state as crucial factor in analyses of current developments without making it the basic unit of reference? Papers for this session can be empirical as well as theoretical/methodological. We especially welcome contributions that discuss or promote mixed-methods and interdisciplinary research.

  • 09RN35 What Kind of “Turn” for Migration Research? Methodological Challenges in Times of Crisis, Critique, and ChangeMETHODOLOGICAL CHALLENGES
    Chair: Kenneth Horvath <kenneth.horvath@univie.ac.at>, University of Education Karlsruhe Chair: Rossalina Latcheva <rossalina.latcheva@fra.europa.eu>, European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights, Vienna

    The proposed session takes the global economic and political crisis as starting point for a critical re­flection on prevalent methodological tendencies in migration research. The session relates ongoing methodological discussions to recent societal developments. What kind of “turn” in migration research, if any, is needed in the face of the current developments? What methodological challenges arise? Do we have the means to analyse migration-related social inequalities without losing identity formation and identity politics from sight? Considering the “transnational turn” of migration research over the past decades: How can we include the nation-state as crucial factor in analyses of current developments without making it the basic unit of reference? Papers for this session can be empirical as well as theoretical/methodological. We especially welcome contributions that discuss or promote mixed-methods and interdisciplinary research.

  • 10RN35 The Crisis’ Impact on the Economic and Social Integration of Immigrant Populations in Europe: Empirical Evidence and Conceptual Frameworks
    Chair: Joanna Napierala <j.m.napierala@uw.edu.pl>, Trinity College Dublin Chair: Anna Wojtynska <annawo@hi.is>; EDDA Center of Excellence Chair: Sebastian Rinken <srinken@iesa.csic.es>, Instituto de Estudios Sociales Avanzados

    In several European countries, the severity of the economic crisis initiated in 2008 is such that it questions the widely accepted idea of immigrants’ inexorable (albeit often slow and incomplete) progress toward economic assimilation with the autochthonous population. What is more, as the crisis keeps widening and deepening, its repercussions might even generate tensions that could threaten the very model of social cohesion, predicated on distinctively European conceptions of social protection, inclusion, and human rights. This risk becomes evident when the appeal of anti-immigrant populism increases manifestly, but it should arguably be detected preventively and treated pro-actively if possible. This session aims to provide a forum for any well-founded empirical, methodological, or conceptual contribution to this research area; papers that would attempt to reflect on the wider implications of recent findings are especially welcome.

  • 11RN35 Returning from the North to the South – European Labour Migration reversed?
    Chair: Gunnar Olofsson <gunnar.olofsson@lnu.se>, Linnaeus University Sweden

    One of the major migratory movements in Europe occurred in the form of the massive labour migration from the South to the North between the late 1950s and the mid 1970s. Migrants from Greece, Yugoslavia, Italy, Spain, Portugal and Turkey came to work in the factories, in the service sectors, sometimes in the building sectors of Western and Northern Europe, to fill positions which no longer had much attraction for the local population. After some decades many of them returned to their country of origin. How have these returning emigrants handled these key passages in their lives – their emigration, immigration, re-immigration? Did they attain what they wanted when they first emigrated? How did they adapt to their new countries – first as immigrants and then as returning emigrants? What changes – in life, attitudes, politics etc – did they undergo during their emigration? Have these influenced their reinsertion in their country of origin? How does the current political-economic crisis affect re-migration processes? How do the experiences of previous labour migrants affect current migration decisions by younger generations? This session aims to elucidate these questions, for the emigration generation as well as for their children.

  • 12RN35 Migration Research and the Question of Social Spaces: Dynamic Boundaries and Issues of BelongingThe everyday life at the local level
    Chair: Karin Peters <karin.peters@wur.nl>, University of Wageningen

    Social spaces are always experienced and interpreted spaces and as such constructed and reconstructed in the everyday life. The relevance of space in the sociology of migration can hardly be underestimated. Building upon existing works such as on methodological nationalism, migratory movements and scaling processes or reflections of the spatial within transnational migration studies, the dynamic relations between social spaces, boundaries, migrations and mobilities need to be examined more closely. We aim at gaining a deeper understanding of the ways in which people create and negotiate (spatial) boundaries and how (groups of) people are included in and excluded from certain spaces, also taking into account the role of the nation-state and the migration scholars’ take on spatiality. In this session we welcome papers that focus on these multiple relations seeking contributions that are either based on empirically grounded studies, or conceptual papers reflecting upon these relations in a methodological sense.

  • 13RN35 Migration Research and the Question of Social Spaces: Dynamic Boundaries and Issues of Belonging Boundary making between scales
    Chair: Elisabeth Scheibelhofer <elisabeth.scheibelhofer@univie.ac.at>, University of Vienna

    Social spaces are always experienced and interpreted spaces and as such constructed and reconstructed in the everyday life. The relevance of space in the sociology of migration can hardly be underestimated. Building upon existing works such as on methodological nationalism, migratory movements and scaling processes or reflections of the spatial within transnational migration studies, the dynamic relations between social spaces, boundaries, migrations and mobilities need to be examined more closely. We aim at gaining a deeper understanding of the ways in which people create and negotiate (spatial) boundaries and how (groups of) people are included in and excluded from certain spaces, also taking into account the role of the nation-state and the migration scholars’ take on spatiality. In this session we welcome papers that focus on these multiple relations seeking contributions that are either based on empirically grounded studies, or conceptual papers reflecting upon these relations in a methodological sense.

  • 14RN35 Sociology of MigrationDiscourses and Policies
    Chair: Marco Martiniello <M.Martiniello@ulg.ac.be>, University of Liège
  • 15RN35 Migrants and the Labour Market
    Chair: Lena Näre <lena.nare@helsinki.fi>, University of Helsinki
  • 16RN35 New Aspects within Migration Research
    Chair: Parveen Akthar
  • 17RN35 Human Rights Based Approaches to Migration Policies
    Chair: Christof Roos <christof.roos@sfb597.uni-bremen.de>; University of Bremen

    European and national level migration policies combine liberal and restrictive components with respect to policy areas such as immigration, asylum, external borders and integration. However, the trend at both levels has been towards increasingly restrictive migration policies that often neglect migrants’ human rights in order to protect national and European interests. This session seeks to challenge these interest based perspectives by exploring human rights based approaches to migration policies. Paper topics to be considered for this session include:

    • Conceptual bases for a human rights based approach to migration policies
    • Specific human rights based approaches to various migration policy areas
    • Empirical case-studies of human rights based migration policies
    • Scenarios to achieve human rights based migration policies, or address obstacles to this goal
  • 18RN35

Joint Sessions

  • 16JS31JS35On Disadvantaged Populations within Health Care Systems in Contemporary Europe: The Case of Migrants and Ethnic Minorities

    Joint session with RN31 – Ethnic Relations, Racism and Antisemitism and RN16 – Sociology of Health and Illness

    Chair: Adam Burgess <A.Burgess@kent.ac.uk> University of Kent

    The current economic recession and political crisis are being used as arguments to states to cut social welfare. In this context, health disparities between socio-economic groups are widening; healthcare rights are diminishing. The first populations targeted by these cutting politics seem to be deprived migrants and, in a more indirect way, ethnic minorities. Discourses on the supposed economic burden of these populations for European healthcare systems are continuously leaked by the media, but also how professionals and civil organisations are claiming for civil disobedience. How far can these be seen as a direct consequence of economic recession and political crises? What new (?) morality discourses are rising to justify the new colored frontiers within European health systems? What are the actual life stories of persons experiencing such crises in different parts of Europe? And how should we study them, what novel and innovative theories and methods are called for?

  • 34JS35Migrant Religions as a Challenge to European Identities (1)

    Joint session with RN34 – Sociology of Religion

    Chair: Berta Alvarez-Miranda <berta@cps.ucm.es>, Complutense University of Madrid Chair: Heidemarie Winkel <hwinkel@uni-potsdam.de>, University of Potsdam

    Already in classical sociological theory, religion functioned as a looking glass of change in times of crisis. At present, migrant religions are challenging and contributing to a critique of European identities. How do various European contexts accommodate migrant religions? What are the experiences, attitu­des and demands of their followers? How does the treatment of matters related to Islam inform on European identities and their current transformations? What conceptual and empirical tools does socio­logical analysis offer for the understanding of the varieties of internal and external religious critique?

  • 34JS352Migrant Religions as a Challenge to European Identities (2)

    Joint session with RN34 – Sociology of Religion

    Chair: Berta Alvarez-Miranda <berta@cps.ucm.es>, Complutense University of Madrid Chair: Heidemarie Winkel <hwinkel@uni-potsdam.de>, University of Potsdam

    Already in classical sociological theory, religion functioned as a looking glass of change in times of crisis. At present, migrant religions are challenging and contributing to a critique of European identities. How do various European contexts accommodate migrant religions? What are the experiences, attitu­des and demands of their followers? How does the treatment of matters related to Islam inform on European identities and their current transformations? What conceptual and empirical tools does socio­logical analysis offer for the understanding of the varieties of internal and external religious critique?


Thank you very much to all participants for making esa torino an outstanding conference.