Children, youth and families

‘We feel at home, but we do not feel welcome’: Integration processes in a multi- and intergenerational perspective

Description: This dissertation enriched the knowledge on ‘integration’ by combining a multidimensional with a multi- and intergenerational perspective. We added to existing knowledge by including not only migrants and their children in our study, but also their grandchildren; and by studying integration from not only a multi- but also an intergenerational perspective. Furthermore, we showed how the concept of (the politics of) belonging provides much needed additional tools to open up the discussion about the definition and the pathways of integration with the perspectives of (descendants of) migrants themselves, to conceptualise their transnational belongings next to their local ones, and to grasp the dynamic interplay between (descendants of) migrants and the broader (receiving) society. We concluded that (studying) integration should not only be about increasing similarities to a dominant majority group, but also about the remaking of the mainstream and its growing capacity for dissent.
Promoter(s): Ilse Derluyn , Lieve Bradt
Researcher(s): Floor Verhaeghe
Faculty / Faculties: Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences
Period of time: 2012 - 2019

Assimilation processes of migrants in an inter- and multigenerational perspective

Description: This research is about assimilation processes of several generations of migrants (1st, 2nd, 3rd generation) in different time episodes (sixties, eighties, present). Assimilation is not seen as an ideal to reach, but rachter as a possible way of examining processes migrants go through in the receiving country. Assimilation is used as a multidimensional concept, with a structural (education, labour market), cultural (language, leisure time), social (network, membership of organizations) and identificational dimension (self-identification in terms of ethnic/regional/national belonging). Objective as well as subjective components (own perception of migrants) are taken into account. Three studies are planned: a survey with youngsters in the last years of secondary schools in Genk and Sint-Niklaas, family interviews with multigenerational families with a migrant background and a discourse analysis of newspaper articles of different time episodes.
Promoter(s): Ilse Derluyn, Lieve Bradt
Researcher(s): Floor Verhaeghe
Faculty: Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences
Period of time: 2012 - 2018

I cross the border and carry with me… Cross-border civil status: a private international law issue from a human rights perspective

Description: The increasing mobility of people leads to the worldwide circulation of documents that record the civil status of people (e.g. birth, marriage, death). The recognition of these documents traditionally belongs to the field of private international law which aspires cross-border harmony and continuity in the life of people. A noble objective, yet hard to put in practice. As a result, some people carry a different civil status (e.g. unmarried) in their host country in comparison with the status in their country of origin (e.g. married). Such discrepancies - also called limping legal relations - generate legal uncertainty and unpredictability. This research aims to study a new approach to cross-border civil status. Departing from the right to respect for private and family life, the research will examine whether and to what extend the human rights approach is able to reduce the negative effects of limping legal relations (increasing the cross-border portability of a certain civil status).
Promoter(s): Jinske Verhellen
Researcher(s): Sarah Den Haese
Faculty: Faculty of Law
Period of time: 2016 - 2021

The precarious citizenship of refugees: an empirical study on how refugees become political

Description: In this research we focus on the precarious citizenship of refugees. We aim to not only take into account the citizenship practices, statuses and identities of migrants themselves but also how this interacts with citizenship discourses that are used within the migration and integration policies of Belgian governments. In this way, we want to contribute to the debate on how global migration is challenging and transforming citizenship. To do this, we will undertake a multi-method approach combining an ethnographic study including participant observation and in-depth interviews with young refugees in Belgium and a discourse analysis of the Flemish and Belgian integration and migration policies.
Promoter(s): Lesley Hustinx
Researcher(s): Rachel Waerniers
Department / Research group: Department of Sociology/ Centre for Social Theory
Faculty: Faculty of Political and Social Sciences