The politics of integration: adjusting to new lives in host societies (SIRIUS First Working Paper)

The politics of integration: adjusting to new lives in host societies (SIRIUS First Working Paper)

Michelle Pace and Dogus Simsek - RUC University and Koç University

This paper outlines the academic debates on the topic of migrant and refugee integration. Given the diversity of migratory statuses, experiences and conditions around the world, we argue that the concept of integration needs to be carefully unpacked and contextualized. In rethinking integration, we contend that integration is not just about macro-level policy-making decisions, meso-level implementation or political discourses on these. A conception of integration must also include the perspective of those that are being told that they have to integrate. We therefore pay particular attention to the aspirations, experiences and actions of migrants, refugees and asylum seekers (MRAs), whether “integration” is a concept they think about, how “integration” is interpreted by these targeted subjects and how the diverse nature of migrants and their multiple characteristics shape integration opportunities and challenges.