Global Politics of Migration
International Studies and Political Science have been increasingly interested in the transnational connectivity between migrants, host-states, home states and third country contexts. In the past decade, the field of migration politics has witnessed tremendous growth, as both established scholars and early-career researchers have been engaging with the politics of population movements, theoretically and empirically. The proposed section on the “Global Politics of Migration” aims to supplant this growing academic research at the 10th ECPR General Conference. We welcome contributions building on established scholarship on migration integration in host-countries, which seek to further emphasize how diasporas and states in which they reside participate in transnational and global political processes.
This Section is organized around four Panels we wish to organise:
Panel: Migration Management & the State. The first Panel seeks to focus on the role of states in migratory processes, on the sending, transit, and receiving sides. By having the capacity, if not always the will, to regulate migration stocks and flows, states remain central in any research agenda around the politics of migration. Questions around state interests, the role of political institutions, and the political determinants of migration outcomes continue to be pertinent. For this panel, researchers will be encouraged to highlight the multiple linkages between states and migrant populations, the rationale behind the mechanisms that states employ to engage with such groups, and the consequences of migratory processes for the international system.
Panel: The Politics of Forced Migration. A second Panel seeks to focus on the role of forced migration, refugee and asylum politics. The current crisis in the Mediterranean highlights a long-standing need to redefine the system of asylum-seeking globally, and to better understand the implications of refugee movements on the refugees themselves, and on host-states, home-states, third locations, and the international system. States often securitise refugee experiences through overt or covert social mechanisms, or reduce the discussion to issues of social welfare. The panel will potentially foster a nuanced study of multiple processes that affect state and non-state actors alike, and follow how refugee movements can create challenges to human and minority rights, statehood, and foster diffusion of ideas across borders.
Panel: Diasporas as Non-state Actors in World Politics. A third Panel will focus on the role of diasporas as non-state actors in world politics. This Panel will emphasise the agency of diasporas, as opposed to those of states. It will also aim to understand how mobilized diasporas resemble or differ from other transnational social movements. The Panel also seeks to understand to what degree diasporas are autonomous actors, and to what degree their positionality in different contexts of host-states, home-states and third country locations influence their political activism. This Panel will also seek to understand how diaspora activism moves from the local, to the national, to the global levels of engagement.
Panel: Diasporas and Political Regimes. A fourth Panel will seek to understand the role of diasporas particularly for the change and sustenance of political regimes. The focus will be to analyse different approaches for diasporas to foster procedural or value-based changes in democratization in countries of origin, and also on how policies of sending states are shaped by the regime of the polity, whether democratic, transition, competitive authoritarian and authoritarian regimes. The role of diaspora autonomy vs positionality in specific contexts will be of interest for this Panel as well.
Dr. Maria Koinova, Reader (Senior Associate Professor) at the University of Warwick and Principal Investigator of the 5-year European Research Council Starting Grant ‘Diasporas and Contested Sovereignty,’ is the author of Ethnonationalist Conflict in Postcommunist States (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2013) and “Sustained vs. Episodic Mobilization among Conflict-generated Diasporas” published in International Political Science Review in July 2015. Her articles on diaspora mobilization were published in the European Journal of International Relations, Foreign Policy Analysis, International Political Sociology, Review of International Studies, Ethnic and Racial Studies, and Communist and Postcommunist Studies, among others. Koinova defended her Ph.D. at the European University Institute (2005). She held research appointments at Harvard’s Kennedy School, Davis Center, and Center for European Studies, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington DC, and Uppsala University, among others.
Gerasimos Tsourapas is a Senior Teaching Fellow at SOAS, University of London. His research interests include diaspora politics, the interplay between migration and authoritarianism, as well as the politics of the Middle East, with a specific focus on Egypt and Tunisia. His published work has appeared in the British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, the Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, Mediterranean Politics, and Insight Turkey. He has also written on the politics of Egyptian migration to Libya for the Middle East Research and Information Project. His article on the politics of Egyptian migration under Gamal Abdel Nasser was awarded the 2015 Wadad Kadi Travel Fellowship by the Middle East Studies Association. Gerasimos is currently an Executive Committee member of the Migration & Citizenship Section of the American Political Science Association. During the 2013-14 academic year, he was a Visiting Fellow at the Center for Migration and Refugee Studies, American University of Cairo. He holds a BA from Yale University, and two MSc degrees from the London School of Economics and SOAS. Before coming to SOAS, he was employed as a researcher for the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2009-11), and as a European Union elections observer, most recently during the Tunisian Constituent Assembly elections.