The Politicization of Immigration in Portugal between 1995 and 2014: A European Exception?

Out now, an extension of the SOM project to Portugal.

Notwithstanding the doubling of the foreign population settled in the country in the early 2000s, the diminished salience and the absence of significant political conflict suggest that immigration failed to become politicized in Portugal.

Happy to see this published, and excellent to see my figures in print so that we can directly compare the results for Portugal with the other seven countries in the original SOM project and the SOM book.

Carvalho, João, and Mariana Carmo Duarte. 2020. ‘The Politicization of Immigration in Portugal between 1995 and 2014: A European Exception?’ JCMS: Journal of Common Market Studies. https://doi.org/10.1111/jcms.13048.
Van der Brug, Wouter, Gianni D’Amato, Joost Berkhout, and Didier Ruedin, eds. 2015. The Politicisation of Migration. Abingdon: Routledge.

Call for Papers: Discrimination and Racism in Cross-National Perspective — IMISCOE 2020

Discrimination and Racism in Cross-National Perspective

Panel organised at the 17th IMISCOE Annual Conference Luxembourg

30 June – 2 July 2020

Organizers: Patrick Simon (INED), Didier Ruedin (University of Neuchâtel)

For a long time racism has been studied without references to discrimination and was mainly conceived as a specific expression of prejudice. The turn to more subtle and systemic forms of racism has paved the way to the development of studies in terms of ethnic and racial discrimination. This researche on discrimination against immigrants and their descendants in Europe has grown significantly in the last twenty years, paralleling the settlement of immigrant populations. They document differential treatment and discrimination in different markets (e.g. labour market, housing) and social spheres regulated by principles of equality (e.g. school, health service, police). Patterns of discrimination are embedded in institutional contexts and a larger societal environment, characterised not only by economic uncertainties and increasing political polarisation in public debate around immigrant related issues, but also by increasing diversity and opportunities of contact. Such changes in the context are likely to affect attitudes and ideology diffusion in majority and minority members. However, studies about discrimination do not refer specifically to racism, and the methodological gains in measuring discrimination did not transfer directly to the measurement of racism. How far racism and ethnic and racial discrimination are distinct, and how they relate to each other are key issues we would like to explore in this panel.

This workshop will bring together researchers on discrimination and racism, tackling these issues from various disciplines, theoretical backgrounds and methods. We welcome empirical studies of discrimination patterns across a large variety of domains, theoretical perspectives on how the prevalence of ethnic discrimination and racism should be explained and conceptualised, and studies on the consequences of anti-discrimination policies and legislation, in historical perspective as well as in contemporary contexts. We also welcome papers which use and discuss theories about cross-country differences, ethnic hierarchies, and evolution over time, including studies which compare the historical experiences of discrimination and racism among early European immigrants in the US with more recent immigrant groups on both sides of the Atlantic.

Submit your abstract specifying the research question, data, methods and findings (200 words maximum) at http://neuchatel.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_0B2Oxgv352FCI9n no later than 25 November 2019. For further information get in touch with Didier Ruedin (didier.ruedin@unine.ch). The notification of acceptance will be made by 30 November 2019.

What is the claim to representation for immigrants?

When we discuss the claim to political representation, we normally do not differentiate between the executive and the legislative (and the judicative). Looking at the claim to representation for immigrants, I believe that perhaps we should. There’s some tension between citizenship as an exclusive right and ‘no taxation without representation’. Interestingly, in many places immigrants can now vote at the local level, and the literature seems to focus on this extension of rights rather than the ability to access full political rights via citizenship.

Here is a possible approach. We could argue that the claim to representation in the executive may be restricted to citizens, while the legislative should be opened to the entire resident population (irrespective of citizenship). Opening the legislative could be defended by deliberation in the chamber(s) and the aforementioned principle of ‘no taxation without representation’. Neither of these requires access to the decision-making in the executive, which could be retained as an exclusive right. Put differently, we would focus on the legislative as law-makers, and then argue that everyone affected should have a possibility in shaping the rules that affect them (i.e. the entire resident population). Citizens, with a stronger claim to the in-group will then decide how to put these rules into place. Not fogetting the judicative, is it the judicative that should be restricted to citizens?

Irrespective of these, I never understood giving access at the local level, though. If non-citizens should have a right to participate because they are affected by the rules of the game, then shouldn’t they be allowed to participate (and be represented) at any level? Let’s throw in trustees and delegates to the mix, and the impossibility of future generations to represent themselves, and nothing seems that clear anymore…

Ruedin, Didier. 2013. Why Aren’t They There? The Political Representation of Women, Ethnic Groups and Issue Positions in Legislatures. Colchester: ECPR Press.

Ruedin, Didier. 2018. ‘Participation in Local Elections: “Why Don’t Immigrants Vote More?”’ Parliamentary Affairs 71 (2): 243–262. https://doi.org/10.1093/pa/gsx024.