Article

Immigration and Migrant Integration in Multicultural Societies

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Abstract

This paper analyzes whether the general trend towards increasing subnational authority concerning the governance of complex issues is also true for the fields of immigration and migrant integration in multicultural societies. It is argued that an analytical distinction should be made between ‘immigration’ as the mere regulation of international migration flows and the much more complex and multidimensional issue of ‘migrant integration’. Precisely the multiple dimensions of integration—social, economic and political—entail that it is a cross-sectoral responsibility and an issue which involves more than one level of government. The field of immigration, by contrast, is with very few exceptions a stronghold of central government power. It is demonstrated how these different logics have serious repercussions on the coordination of immigration and migrant integration because the intrinsic interconnectedness of these policy fields is neglected.

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