Migrant Labour: Contested Integration, Prospects for Citizenship

Call for papers- International conference

Migrant Labour: Contested Integration, Prospects for Citizenship 15–16 September 2011, Ljubljana, Slovenia

Sustainable economies across Europe are largely possible through the use of migrant labour that responds to demographic and labour market shortages by filling in positions that are unattractive to domestic workers and which are characterized by poor working conditions, low pay and limited human rights. Migrants lives are strongly conditioned by a skills and status based migration and integration management system which issues various permits to migrant populations. In these post-fordist times of welfare cuts, migrant workers are the first to lose jobs and permits that relate to employment contracts. This makes them vulnerable to precarious conditions within informal labour markets and puts them at risk of illegality. The conference aims to explore how various mechanisms of “nationalizing citizenship” are reproduced within migration and integration policies and their influence on migrants lives. Replaced now by a problematic assimilationism, “integration” was seen as providing a way forward by stimulating debates and policies aimed at the equalization of migrants. Increasingly, however, integration has become a contested concept lacking the power to truly attend to the transnational practices of migrants which cut across the borders of nation states.

Unable to provide the basis for a truly dialogical communication, integration has increasingly become a concept that underpins various processes of nationalization, such as those protecting national labour markets from migrants. Rather than viewing labour migration as a purely economic process of labour reallocation, the conference grasps migration in its complexity, i.e. as a human process that affects migrants and their families. Furthermore, the conference aims at addressing an expanded notion of citizenship which can inform a more coherent and sustainable approach to understanding the various forms of civic engagement that relate to migrants.

The conference provides an international and cross-disciplinary space to explore these questions. We are particularly interested in papers that address the following:

-Theoretical and/or empirical considerations of migrants.

– integration in Europe

-Citizenship and migration

-Precarious migrant labour in a cross-country comparative perspective

-Gender and migrant labour

-Migrants transnationalism

-Intersectionalities in migration


– Strategies of coping with nationally embedded protectionism

Submission guidelines: Submissions for presentations should include paper abstracts of max. 250 words, half a page CV, affiliation and contact details.

Submissions deadline: Submissions of abstracts are expected by April 22, 2011 and of full papers on September 5, 2011.

Acceptance decisions will be communicated to the submitters by May 27, 2011.

We are planning to publish selected papers presented at the conference.

We are looking for the possibilities of funding accommodation and/or travel for participants within the East East: Partnership Beyond Borders Program. We especially encourage participants from Central-Eastern Europe and the Balkans to apply for whom we’ll be able to fund conference related costs.

Conference organisers:

Assist. Prof. Mojca Pajnik and Prof. Floya Anthias

Please send inquiries to:

E.mail: mojca.pajnik@mirovni-institut.si

Mojca Pajnik

Peace Institute, Institute for Contemporary Social and Political Studies and

Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Ljubljana


Peace Institute

Metelkova 6, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia

Tel.: +386 1 234 77 20

Fax.: +386 1 234 77 22