CfP: 2024 IMISCOE Spring Conference – Mobilities and Immobilities in an Era of Polycrisis

The Migration Research Center at Koç University (MiReKoç) is proud to host the IMISCOE 2024 Spring Conference in Istanbul on 17-19 April 2024. The conference also celebrates MiReKoc’s 20th anniversary. The call for papers can be found below.

Call for Papers

Crises generate complex, nuanced and multi-directional actions within the mobility spectrum, such as emigration, return, forced displacement, or immobility. Against the backdrop of emerging and protracted armed conflicts, ever increasing impact of climate change, continuing global economic downturn, and the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, this conference seeks to examine interrelated and compounded crises with a view on their relation to mobilities. The distinctive feature of the contemporary polycrisis situations is their unprecedented scale, multitude, speed, and overlapping natures, which further exacerbates their intersection with migration. This conference aims to provide a space for scholars and researchers to explore this intersection between polycrisis and (im)mobilities with a specific focus on four interrelated crises situations: political, economic, health-related, and environmental.

Political, economic, health-related, and environmental crises rarely develop in an one-sided manner. Instead, they are triggered by one categorical event, which triggers others, leading to multiple, compounded crisis situations. These situations impact migration trends, decisions, capabilities, and livelihoods of migrant communities. Initial aspirations and decisions to migrate are constructed at the intersection of local and individual realities; by sociocultural, political, and economic transformations ‘back home’; and by the structural constraints of globalization. Although the diverse motivations for migration are established in protracted temporalities, combination of extreme crises may function as a trigger or a tipping point for mobility or make an immobility situation even more severe.

Elaborating on the term “polycrisis”, this international conference proposes to explore the impact of the multiple and overlapping crises on migration and mobility by focusing particularly on four crisis axes: politics, economics, health, and climate. Research that accounts for these multiple and overlapping crises will provide deeper insights into their impacts on migration and mobility. The conference aims to bring together researchers from various disciplines and geographies with different methodological approaches to discuss these pressing issues. It seeks to foster a research agenda that embeds migration and mobility within current social transformations, while acknowledging the multiple crises we are going through. The conference aims to create a space for future-oriented dialogue and exchange among scholars.

The conference will consider paper submissions focusing on but not limited to, the following topics:

  • Polycrisis, mobility/immobility, and stages of migration:
    • Mobility/Immobility and Polycrisis
    • Migration aspirations
    • Settled immigrant populations
    • Return decisions
  • Perspectives on political crises:
    • Emerging and protracted conflict situations with far reaching impact
    • Regional perspectives from Ukraine, Syria, Afghanistan, Iran, among others
    • Migration diplomacy and the instrumentalization of migration crises
    • Rising xenophobia and democracies in crisis
    • The language of crisis and its implications for migration policies
  • Migration within the context of global economic and financial crises:
    • Inflation/increase in living costs
    • Demographic developments
    • Unemployment/labour market integration
    • Shifting economic activities/patterns (e.g. gig economy, digital nomadism, etc.)
  • Migration and health in a rapidly changing world:
    • Revisiting mobility discussions following the COVID-19 pandemic
    • Right to healthcare; migrant and refugee health in transit and upon arrival
    • Migration and transnationalism on health-related decisions/practices
  • Environmental and climate change induced migration:
    • Food security and migration
    • Direct/indirect slow onset processes
    • Rapid onset disasters


This conference will be hybrid in nature and presenters can join online or in person. The deadline for submissions is September 18, 2023. Decisions will be sent by October 23, 2023. Paper submissions must include a title, abstract (max. 350 words) and a short biography (max. 250 words). To apply, please fill in this form.

The conference organizers intend to publish an edited volume and a special issue from the conference proceedings.