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Law and Private Governance for a new Understanding of Immigrant Integration

Carlsberg Foundation Young Researcher Fellowships

What

The LUII project investigates immigrant integration from a legal perspective, with a particular focus on the role of non-state actors, such as NGOs, private companies, and municipalities in integration work. Current legal research looks at how refugees and migrants can enter a country, obtain refugee status, and other legal issues. LUII’s novel approach highlights the potential beneficial effects of the law as well as the efforts of non-state actors in the integration of migrants and refugees, which in turn has an impact on host countries' economies and local communities. The goal is to demonstrate that legislation can further strengthen immigrant integration by involving non-state actors.

Why

In 2019, five years after the so-called refugee crisis, immigrant integration remains a challenge for most European countries. Governments struggle with issues ranging from resource allocation to cultural adaptation of migrants, especially refugees. Denmark has an extensive regulatory framework for immigrant integration. Nevertheless, statistics show for example that even after many years of residence, refugees have a hard time maintaining a stable place on the Danish labour market. Moreover, refugees and immigrants in general have trouble accessing permanent housing, and they have more health problems than other sections of the population. Legislation can help in facilitating immigrant integration in multiple ways, including by boosting the role played by non-state actors.

How

Firstly, I will compare Danish, European, and international legal standards on integration in order to identify which elements of these standards may act as barriers to refugees and migrants' opportunities for integration in a host country. I will also carry out a survey on the actual obstacles experienced by refugees and migrants in accessing employment, housing, and health services in Denmark. Finally, I will develop a coherent legal framework that systematises the contribution of non-state actors in integration processes.

SSR

Successful immigration policies facilitate the contribution of immigrants to economic prosperity and the social life of their host country. LUII will help strengthen legal rights for migrants and refugees and at the same time help non-state actors in gaining an in-depth overview of the relevant integration rules. The project will run a variety of activities including workshops with relevant stakeholders such as NGOs, private companies, and municipalities to present the research results. All of LUUI’s research outputs will be open access and communicated to a wider audience.