Maastricht Migration Lecture Series – Does Citizenship Matter?

Six years after the so-called ‘refugee crisis’ reached the European continent, the topic is still widely debated. Media, politics, and the public discuss intensive ways to deal with incoming migrants and to prevent migration in the future. However, many misconceptions exist around migration and joint solutions to the topic are lacking.


With this lecture series, the Refugee Project Maastricht, the Maastricht Young Academy (MYA), the Maastricht Center for Citizenship, Migration, and Development (MACIMIDE), and UNU-Merit aim to provide an objective picture on the topic of migration and offer new insights. To do so, different aspects around migration are analyzed and different perspectives are given on how states might deal with the influx of refugees in the future. In a number of lectures, experts will talk about topics such as myths and misconceptions in the area of migration, climate change, and migration, dealing with high displacement, gender and migration, citizenship, EU Asylum Law, and more.


Does holding citizenship affect migrants’ life experience and, if so, how? In this lecture we discuss the controversial and complex relation between immigrant naturalization and life experiences within the host society. This relationship is ideologically controversial because some politicians view citizenship as a reward for being a well-integrated immigrant, whereas others see the promise of full membership of the country of residence and the entitlement to all the rights attached to it as a major incentive for self-empowerment and identification with others in society. The causal relation between citizenship and immigrant integration is scientifically complex as immigrants who are already better integrated are also more likely to naturalize. We discuss key concepts and theories, some comparative facts about citizenship policies in Europe, and findings from ongoing research. Finally, we reflect on how the pandemic may affect these considerations, as migrants will look to formalise their right to remain and reenter the country of naturalisation in the event of a subsequent pandemic or other emergency event, especially if they are able to retain their citizenship of origin.


For more information about prof. Vink’s ongoing research in this area, see: https://www.milifestatus.com.
You can follow prof. Vink on twitter: @maartenpvink

Find more information here.