University of Leicester event to unravel Europe’s ‘migration crisis’

Posted by ew205 at Jan 12, 2018 12:06 PM |
Professor Heaven Crawley to share first-hand experiences of migrants detailed in a new book at free public talk on 17 January

An upcoming event at the University of Leicester will shed light on the lived experiences of migrants travelling across Europe in order to stimulate dialogue on migration, citizenship and belonging.

The free public event, taking place on 17 January in Attenborough Basement Lecture Theatre 1, is being hosted by the Leicester Migration Network; the Unit for Diversity, Inclusion and Community Engagement (DICE); and University of Sanctuary - University of Leicester.

For the event, migration expert and author Professor Heaven Crawley will be answering questions surrounding migration, displacement and belonging by drawing on a new book Unravelling Europe's 'Migration Crisis': Journeys over land and sea (Policy Press, 2018) co-authored with colleagues from the Universities of Coventry, Birmingham and Oxford.

The book, which draws upon compelling first-hand accounts from 500 people who arrived on the shores of Europe in 2015, casts new light on the `migration crisis' and challenges politicians, policy makers and the media to rethink their understanding of why and how people move.

The text, which has been described as "Essential reading for all scholars of migration and refugees” (Jennifer Hyndman, York University, Canada) provides a framework for understanding the dynamics underpinning the recent, unprecedented levels of migration across, and loss of life in, the Mediterranean.

Professor Crawley will present an overview of the key findings of the research including testimonies and quotes from some of those who were interviewed, and look at the adequacies and inadequacies of Europe’s policy response to the ‘migration crisis’. This will be followed by a Q&A session with the audience.

The discussion will be chaired by Dr Leah Bassel, Director of the Leicester Migration Network at the University of Leicester.

Professor Crawley is Chair of International Migration at Coventry University’s Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations where she leads a team of researchers who are working on issues of migration, displacement and belonging.

She has written and published extensively on topics that include the causes of forced migration to Europe, gender issues in procedures for determining refugee status, access to legal advice and representation, public attitudes towards asylum and immigration issues, and children’s experiences of immigration controls, detention, guardianship and the process of age assessment.

Professor Crawley said: “Our research with refugees and other migrants crossing the Mediterranean to Europe shows that the nature of journeys, the routes taken and the factors that lead people to risk everything and get on a boat to Europe are far more complex than presented by politicians and the media.

“Whilst the EU has taken steps to limit the number of people seeking international protection in Europe, it has done little to address the factors that lead people to leave their homes in the first place or to move on from the places in which they initially settled. Addressing these factors will require a much more nuanced, longer-term approach.”

In October 2017, the University of Leicester launched its bid to become a University of Sanctuary, defined as one that 'offers good practice in welcoming asylum seekers and refugees into the university community and fostering a culture of welcome and inclusion for all'.

Dr Leah Bassel said: “We are delighted to invite Professor Crawley to the University of Leicester to share the findings of her research and extracts from her new book with us. We know this event, and new publication, will stimulate vital conversation on migration, citizenship and belonging.

“Informed by the first-hand experiences of migrants, we hope the conversation will galvanise the audience to consider action, individually and collectively, in support of migrant communities and the important contribution they make to the UK. At the University of Leicester, this includes supporting the development of a University of Sanctuary.”

The event will take place on 17 January 2018 6.15pm-7.45pm Attenborough Basement Lecture Theatre 1, University of Leicester, LE1 7RH.

Register via Eventbrite here:


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