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Meet the online hub for migration research

The recent boom in migration research has proved to be both a blessing and a challenge for experts in the field. It means they potentially have more information about the issue than they could have ever imagined, but that’s only if they can actually find specific articles of interest. The Migration Research Hub developed under the CROSS-MIGRATION project will make this much easier.

Society

Think of it as a Google Scholar or ResearchGate lookalike, strictly focused on research related to migration. The Migration Research Hub is the answer to a long-standing problem in the field: whilst there are many different migration research databases out there, none of these has gone so far as to bring all publications, projects and experts under the same roof. “Our Migration Research Hub will provide a broad range of actors with access to migration knowledge. This is important especially in these times of migration urgency that can spark emotional discussions and facilitate the spreading of alternative facts. It is also important for academia as it facilitates systematic knowledge accumulation. It encourages scholars from all career stages to build on each other’s work,” explains Peter Scholten, Director of IMISCOE (the largest European network of scholars in the field of migration and integration) and coordinator of the CROSS-MIGRATION project.

A valuable tool for migration research

The platform, which was built by experts for experts, currently includes some 90 000 articles and books, 2 500 projects, 600 doctoral dissertations and around 350 expert profiles. With these come an extra layer of resources and tools developed specifically for the Research Hub, including methodological issue briefs, a synthesis of migration policy indicators and an overview of migration scenarios. Interactive tools for the last two will be launched soon, along with a textbook on migration studies. To understand how the platform can help advance research in the field, we can take the example of student mobility. “The person can go to the portal, and either click directly on the dedicated taxonomy or search by using keywords in the database. This leads to a list of relevant entries from publications, databases, projects and experts working on this subject, along with a very brief definition of student mobility,” Scholten explains. “The results can then be sorted or made more precise, for instance by entering a specific country, discipline, period, etc.” Eventually, the platform is expected to help research and evidence find its way into the policy-making process. Policy-makers can browse through relevant knowledge and expertise, before taking new measures and designing new strategies.

Still a work in progress

Since CROSS-MIGRATION came to an end, IMISCOE has been and will keep maintaining and developing the Migration Research Hub. IMISCOE is notably collaborating with the RESOMA project to bring together their expert databases, as well as developing an interactive textbook on migration studies that connects introductory texts produced by leading scholars with online sources collected in our Migration Research Hub. “The Hub is designed to be sustainable over the long term,” Scholten explains. “Not only will it continue to automatically capture new publications and research projects that appear on specific websites, but it will also allow users to submit their own research and maintain their own expert profiles.”

Keywords

CROSS-MIGRATION, research hub, migration research, online sources, studies

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