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Good beginnings, promising futures. Children with migration background in Polish schools

“Children are the future, and the future belongs to them.” In this project, wea sk: which futures do migrant children embody, and what kind of futures belong to them? Formal education is often understood as key to integration.  Integration, however, is a contested concept, and what counts as successful integration often depends on gender and socioeconomic class, and differs depending on the perspective from which it is defined (pupils’ or educators’).


Migrant children have legally guaranteed access to education in Poland, but many don't feel that they belong in Polish schools and the Polish society. Not all pupils are used to having foreign-born classmates. Addition of newcomers to established classrooms poses pedagogical and behavioral challenges. 


The main research question is: What are the key barriers and facilitators, successes, and challenges
facing migrant children in their integration in and through schools in local communities in Poland? 


The project includes research in western Poland where migration-induced multiculturalism is beginning to emerge. The project uses interdisciplinary research methodologies--participant observation and ethnographic interviews, focus groups, content analysis, and narrative inquiry--at the nexus of migration and education. Through analysis of multiple points of view of school children their families and teachers, and education administrators, the project goes beyond the current state of knowledge on migrant children’s integration in schools and the wider society. 

Hands Raised

African migration

to Thailand.

Race, mobility, and integration


This book, based on exploratory ethnographic research, analyzes the experiences of African migrants in Thailand.

Thailand has always been a regional migration hub with Africans being the most recent. Sitting at the intersection of race and migration studies, this book focuses on the challenges Black and labor migrants face trying to integrate into a society that has had very limited contact with and knowledge about Black Africans. Bringing together research from African, Thai, and European scholars, this volume focuses on forced migrants, such as Somali asylum seekers, and labor migrants, largely African men seeking better livelihoods in niche economies such as gem trading, garment wholesale, and football playing and coaching. The book also includes theoretical contributions to the understanding of precarity and human security, the concept of in/visibility to analyze the challenges African migrants face in Thailand as well as the concept of othering to understand discrimination against Africans. The book also analyzes the Thai migration policy context and the challenges facing Thai policy-makers, law enforcement representatives, and the migrants themselves. While not comparative in nature, this volume directly connects with studies of Africans in other parts of Asia, especially China.


Addressing an important gap in migration research, this book will be of interest to researchers across the fields of migration and mobility studies, African Studies, and Asian Studies.


In this large project, carried out by a consortium of eight universities, I have been involved in studying several issues:

  • The role of religion and religious tolerance in the European 'refugee crisis;' and

  • The involvement of civil society actors in in facilitating assistance and integration of refugees and asylum seekers in Poland and in Hungary.

More information about the project can be found at



In this project, I have studied the different pathways of Polish nurses into the Norwegian labor market and society, examining the impact of mobility regimes on migrants’ lives. My colleagues looked at Swedish and Filipino nurses.


Comparing Scandinavian, EU, and non-EU migrants, we explored how and when migration, gender, race and ethnicity matter, and bring together regimes of immigration and integration in a mutually informative way. The comparison offered the opportunity to examine the impact of these regimes on migrants’ integration into work and society in Norway.

You can learn more about this project on our website and by following our blog

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