The main goal of this Standing Committee is to provide a space for researchers working on topics related to citizenship, migration, and the political participation of migrants. The Standing Committee will seek to provide opportunities to meet, especially through the IMISCOE Annual Conferences. We aim at fostering a collegial and productive exchange of ideas around the SC’s subject matter and to help move it towards substantial collaborations.


  • Ana Margheritis (University of Southampton)
  • Luicy Pedroza (GIGA Hamburg)
  • Daniela Vintila (Centre for Ethnic and Migration Studies, University of Liege)

To become a MIGCITPOL member and receive information about our activities, please contact any of the coordinators with your request.  


MIGCITPOL aims to study the legal and political aspects of citizenship as a status of membership in a polity and its attached legal rights and obligations. Our research is comparative. We examine how access to citizenship status and rights is regulated by law and public policies; and we further explore how this institutional framework affects migrants’ access to naturalization and their active engagement in the political arena. We seek to understand how the underlying norms and practices change over time and differ across countries. We examine the politics of citizenship that include the political participation of migrants (immigrants and emigrants) as well as domestic political mobilisations in support of, or opposed to immigration.

MIGCITPOL focuses on three research topics: 

(1) Comparative research on citizenship laws and citizenship rights: acquisition and loss of citizenship and access to political participation rights

Migration poses a challenge to traditional notions of citizenship as equal and inclusive membership in territorial nation-states. It creates populations of non-citizen residents and non-resident citizens. States have responded to this challenge by partly disconnecting citizenship status and rights, by accepting plural citizenships, by creating statuses of internal and external quasi-citizenship, by changing the rules of acquisition of citizenship for immigrants and their descendants, and by strengthening citizenship links and voting rights for immigrants and emigrants. We analyze patterns and trends with regard to these institutional changes and study configurations in which independent citizenship regimes impact on each other (for instance, through EU citizenship and its free movement rights or through migration between EU member states and third countries). We also study of individual transitions between different citizenship statuses on migrants’ economic opportunities, political engagement, and mobility patterns. Our research mainly builds on comparative data and analyses collected by projects such as the GLOBALCIT Observatory (formerly EUDO Citizenship Observatory).

(2) Transnational political participation: migrants’ political activities in relation to countries of origin and political opportunity structures created by home countries’ governments

Together with the increase of economic, social or religious influence of emigrants on the home society, citizens abroad have been playing a growing role in the politics of their countries of origin. The strong proliferation of external voting mechanisms around the world and the electoral campaigns conducted by homeland political parties in countries with large concentrations of emigrants demonstrate that emigrants’ political support is becoming more important for political actors in countries of origin. The spread of these reforms and practices raises, however, a series of important questions: Why are states and parties trying to reach out to citizens abroad? What is the legitimacy of participating in home country politics from abroad? How does it affect integration processes and how do receiving societies react to this development? Building on previous work on transnational politics conducted within this research group, we now aim to make theoretical and empirical contributions to the new – though fast growing – literature on external voting.

(3) Immigrants’ political engagement in host countries and political mobilisation for and against immigration

Immigration and its visibility have changed in many European countries over recent decades, in particular once it became clear that immigrants planned to settle permanently and started to demand to participate politically in their countries of settlement. The presence of immigrants has become a politically contested issue in many European democracies and the levels of political participation and representation of migrants vary substantially across countries and between groups. We aim to bring together researchers who focus on the link between immigration and (non-)electoral politics with a particular interest in the questions of when, how and why migrants participate in the political arena of their receiving countries, why and when potential conflicts become politicised, and whether this has to do with institutional conditions or migration-related factors. In doing so, we provide a critical mass for the sustainability of research and a platform that facilitates the improvement of work through synergies and critical feedback from researchers working on related topics.

Apart from empirical research and explanatory theories, we also promote applied and contextual normative analyses on each of these topics.


  • Jean-Thomas Arrighi (European University Institute)
  • Rainer Bauböck (European University Institute)
  • Salomon Bennour (University of Neuchâtel)
  • Pieter Bevelander (Malmö University)
  • Antoine Bilodeau (Concordia University)
  • Maria Teresa Capiali (University of Montréal)
  • Irina Ciornei (Bern University)
  • Rosalia Condorelli (University of Catania)
  • Gianni D’Amato (University of Neuchâtel)
  • Gerard-René De Groot (Maastricht University)
  • Costica Dumbrava (Maastricht University)
  • Swantje Falcke (Maastricht University)
  • Tudi Kernalegenn (UCLouvain)
  • Angeliki Konstantinidou (University of Liege)
  • Jean-Michel Lafleur (University of Liege)
  • Christophe Leclerc (University of Maastricht)
  • Ana Margheritis (University of Southampton)
  • Marco Martiniello (University of Liege)
  • Pau Palop (GIGA Hamburg)
  • Francesco Pasetti (CIDOB Barcelona)
  • Luicy Pedroza (GIGA Hamburg)
  • Floris Peters (Maastricht University)
  • Lorenzo Piccoli (European University Institut/ University of Neuchâtel)
  • Elena Sanchez (CIDOB Barcelona)
  • Samuel David Schmid (European University Institute)
  • Wiebke Sievers (Austrian Academy of Sciences)
  • Jeremines Stadlmair (University of Vienna)
  • Ricard Zapata-Barrero (Universitat Pompeu Fabra)
  • Maarten Vink (Maastricht University)
  • Olivier Vonk (Maastricht University)
  • Daniela Vintila (University of Liege)


Panels at IMISCOE conferences

Barcelona 2018

  • Protecting diasporas: immigrant social protection and the sending state - organized by Jean-Michel Lafleur and Daniela Vintila (University of Liege)
  • Migration Citizenship and Political Participation, organized by Jean-Thomas Arrighi de Casanova (GRITIM)
  • Being an Immigrant in Times of Backlash against Diversity, organized by Antoine Bilodeau (Concordia University) and Laurence Lessard-Philips (University of Birmingham)
  • [Workshop] Diaspora Politics: Exploring Transnational Political Engagement Initiatives, organized by Kees Biekart (International Institute of Social Studies (The Hague) and Cathy Wilcock (Manchester University)
  • The Politics and Sociology of Immigrant Naturalisation, organized by Floris Peters (Maastricht University) and Anna Tegunimataka (Lund University) 
  • Further data proliferation or better chances for data integration and sharing? Proposals to improve our research community around migration policy indices (and datasets), organized by Luicy Pedroza (GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies) and Pau Palop-Garcia (GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies)

Rotterdam 2017

  • Younger and older migrants’ forms of political engagement, organized by Anastasia Bermúdez (University of Seville)
  • Hierarchies of polity membership: The Muddled Politics of Citizenship Access and Exclusion, organized by Pieter Bevelander (Malmö University) and Per Mouritsen (University of Århus)
  • ‘Hear me out! Political Participation of Diasporas beyond the Vote’ organized by Pau Palop, Luicy Pedroza (German Institute of Global and Area Studies) and Rilke Mahieu (University of Antwerp)
  • ‘Immigrant legal status, political participation and socioecononomic integration’ organized by Rainer Bauböck (European University Institute)
  • ‘The politics of migration, citizenship and civic integration’ organized by Per Mouritsen (University of Århus)
  • Transnational political mobilisation, diaspora politics and dual citizenship’ organized by Amanda Klekowski von Koppenfels (University of Kent)
  • ‘Welfare and Culture: Attitudes to Immigration, Party Political Transmutations and Civil Society
  • Engagement’, organized by Ov Cristian Norocel (University of Helsinki)

Prague 2016

  • The Politics and Sociology of Immigrant Naturalization, organized by Maarten Vink (Maastricht University)
  • Using images in migration research: a mutual exchange between scholars and artists (two panels) organized by Marco Martiniello (CEDEM, Liège), Wiebke Sievers (ISR, Vienna) and Ricard Zapata-Barrero (GRITIM, Barcelona).

Geneva 2015

  • The Politics of Naturalization Citizenship Admission Criteria in Comparative Perspective, organized by Pieter Bevelander (Malmö University) and Christian Fernández (Malmö University)
  • Governing Transnationalism (two panels): Focusing on Diasporas and Citizenship, organized by Özge Bilgili (Maastricht University) and Marta Bivand Erdal (PRIO, Oslo)
  • Political Representation of Diasporas in the EU (two panels), organized by Jean-Michel Lafleur (CEDEM), Michael Collyer (University of Sussex) and Aija Lulle (University of Latvia)
  • Open Planning Workshop: POPADIVCIT, organized by Marco Martiniello (CEDEM)
  • Integration and Democracy in Migrant Receiving Societies: An Assessment of Joseph Carens’ “The Ethics of Immigration”, organizes by Matteo Gianni (University of Geneva)
  • People-Making in the Era of Declining Fertility, High Migration and Bio-Technological Change, organized by Costica Dumbrava (Maastricht University) and Rainer Bauböck (European University Institute)

Madrid 2014

  • The Boundaries of Citizenship – Naturalization, Integration, Membership - organized by Pieter Bevelander (Malmö University) and Christian Fernández (Malmö University) 

Malmö 2013

  • Comparing Citizenship and the Franchise for Migrants: Law, Politics and Participation – organized by Derek Hutcheson (MIM Malmö), Rainer Bauböck (EUI, Florence), Jo Shaw (Edinburgh University)     

Amsterdam 2012

  • Citizenship and voting in post-communist Europe: a snapshot at practices in the enlarged EU and its neighbours - panel organized by Jelena Dzankic (European University Institute)
    From Attitudes to Populist Mobilization in Europe –organized by Pieter Bevelander (Malmö University) and Gianni D’Amato (University of Neuchâtel)

Warsaw 2011

  • Money and membership: Financial conditions and impacts of citizenship – organized by Rainer Bauböck (European University Institute) and Joachim Stern (University of Vienna)
    From Attitudes to Populist Mobilization in Europe - organized by organized by Pieter Bevelander (Malmö University) and Gianni D’Amato (University of Neuchâtel)
    Migrants and external voting in the EU – organized by Jean-Michel Lafleur (University of Liège)

Liège 2010

  • Populist Mobilisation in Europe - organized by organized by Gianni D’Amato (University of Neuchâtel) and Pieter Bevelander (Malmö University)
    The Socio-political Mobilisation of Immigrants and Ethnic Minorities through Popular Arts and Culture – organized by Marco Martiniello (University of Liège), Jean-Michel Lafleur (University of Liège) and Wiebke Sievers (Austrian Academy of Science)

Stockholm 2009

  • Researching into external voting – organized by Paolo Boccagni (University of Trento)
    Highly skilled Indian migrants – organized by Aurélie Varrel (French National Centre for Scientific Research)
    Migration Control, Justice and Exclusion – Migration, Citizenship and Normative Theory – organized by Albert Kraler (International Centre for Migration Policy Development) and Rainer Bauböck (European University Institute)


Related research projects and groups