Social Transformation and International Migration

This five-year project will re-examine the theoretical and methodological basis of international migration research. Policy-makers and scholars concerned with migration often see it as abnormal and inherently problematic, and seek strategies to reduce movements. By contrast, the starting point for this project is the assumption that human mobility is a normal part of social life.

At times of rapid change, such as the current epoch of accelerated globalisation, international migration tends to grow in volume and to become increasingly important as a factor helping to reshape societies. The project approach is to start from the processes of social transformation that affect most countries today, and to analyse the role of human mobility within these processes. Migration is thus seen not just as a result of change nor a cause of change, but as an integral part of social transformation processes.