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On the Margins of the European Community Young adult immigrants in seven European countries

Final Report Summary - EUMARGINS (On the Margins of the European Community Young adult immigrants in seven European countries)

Executive Summary:
EUMARGINS was a three-year project financed by the 7th framework programme for research and technological development (7RP) of the European Union. The project investigated the social inclusion and exclusion of young immigrants and descendants from seven urban-metropolitan areas in seven different European countries. More than 200 young migrants and descendants (ages 18 to 26) from Norway (Oslo), Sweden (Gothenburg), Italy (Genoa), France (Metz/Nancy), Spain (Barcelona), Estonia (Tallin) and the UK (London) were interviewed about their experiences of inclusion and exclusion in school, work, in the neighbourhood and in the city, with the overall aim of finding out exactly what it is that hinders their inclusion in these seven countries, and what factors can help it open up for them. The premise is that individuals may be included in some life arenas, but at the same time excluded from other arenas and that these situations can change over a course of a life time.

During the duration of the project, the team working on it have published two books, several scientific articles, a comprehensive EU wide policy report and seven national policy reports, six policy briefs and 21 illustrative cases (three from each of the seven national contexts). The research and subsequent publications have primarily been based on qualitative data, but quantitative data also played an important role. Analysis of existing statistics, past research, migration history, legal sources, presented in our first book Katrine Fangen, Kirsten Fossan and Ferdinand Andreas Mohn, Inclusion and Exclusion of Young Adult Migrants in Europe-Barriers and Bridges (Ashgate), was used in combination with the life story interviews and participant observations which was published in our second book, Katrine Fangen, Thomas Johansson and Nils Hammarén, Young Migrants: Exclusion and Belonging in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan). This combination method enabled the researcher to seize the complexity of the processes of inclusion and exclusion, as well as the transition between the two.

Listening to the stories of these young migrants it became apparent to the researchers how structural and institutional conditions and the policies of different nations have a great impact on young people's lives. Using these voices as our guide, the research team has attempted to contribute to the broader dissemination of scientific research results and policy recommendations to the wider community by organising national policy workshops for their local constituencies, offering media appearances or newspaper interviews and contributing to a comprehensive EU policy report that puts forward the central policy recommendations and best practices that EUMARGINS cumulated from our research.

Project Context and Objectives:
European societies have changed dramatically in recent decades (economically, politically, socio-culturally and demographically), and migration-whether occurring within Europe, or between external countries and Europe-is one of the most important forces affecting these changes. This can largely be accredited to the fall of the iron curtain, the end of Fascism in Southern Europe and the wars in Somalia, Iraq and Afghanistan. The growth of the European Union has also increased movement within Europe. While 'unity in diversity' is the motto of the EU-which aims to defend common values such as freedom, peace, and solidarity in a Union made up of many cultures and languages-there are other concerns included in the migration and integration policies. An important priority of EU's migration policy is to fight illegal migration, but on the other hand it is underlined that the EU needs migrants in certain sectors and regions in order to deal with its economic and demographic needs. As for integration policies, a top priority of the EU agenda is to promote 'full participation in the labour market .' In this regard, immigrants are seen as a 'potential pool of entrepreneurs in Europe.' Recent developments-such as the rapid enlargement of the EU, the Schengen agreement, and the financial crisis, have significantly increased the volumes of migration, and also reduced the abilities of nation states to regulate the internal EU flows of migrants from outside Europe across the boundaries of nation states. Emergency migrants (refugees and asylum seekers) are added to the pools of EU economic migrants and students, and their demands for housing, education, social security, training or jobs also have to be met. Young migrants and youth with immigrant background represent the largest and most mobile of these migrant groups and understanding the challenges and opportunities that these individuals face in today's Europe is critical for them to reach their full potential thereby effectively contributing to the needs of European nations.

Social exclusion can manifest itself in a multitude of ways. At an extreme, social exclusion might reveal itself through state induced policies, aiming to excommunicate or even deport certain categories from society. At the other end of the spectrum, we find different forms of everyday exclusion, such as gestures or utterances that might be not be meant to exclude, but that are felt as such by the individual. The feeling of being excluded or marked as different is an outcome originating from both sides of the scale. What can be understood is that social exclusion is a complex phenomenon and, consequently, it is difficult to reach a common agreement of how it should be defined. Nevertheless, the general trend is that social exclusion is defined primarily in relation to education and work. However, in our project we use a more multi-dimensional concept, which also includes arenas such as family, peer group, various other social settings, religious or ethnic communities, neighbourhoods or even the nation state. In order to grasp the complexity, it is important to look for experiences of social inclusion among young people who appear to be marginalized and to look for experiences among young people who according to conventional standards are integrated (who have a job, who have higher education and who are included in social networks). It is also important to look for transitions between inclusion and exclusion in an individual's life, and analyse what it is that contributes to such transitions. With a life-span focus in our project we can view social exclusion as a process and we can consider the efforts of young immigrants to combat social exclusion, or we can see how in periods they accept social exclusion and also willingly contribute to it.

There are a number of factors that contribute to social exclusion - low persistent income levels (directly linked to having a job or not) the ability to gain access to jobs, health, housing, and other factors associated with power and status. Gaining access to jobs and education is a critical stage for young people in general. However, immigration plays an important role while also adding further difficulties to a young person's experiences, since language abilities, specific knowledge and skills flowing from education are important factors. For young individuals with an immigrant background there is often a question of accessibility to material and non-material resources that are made available to their "native" counterparts. Consequently, young people of an immigrant background appear to be vulnerable to social exclusion and/or marginalisation in comparison with local native born counterparts in European societies.

In this context the EUMARGINS project seeks to analyse how young migrants and descendants from a variety of different backgrounds cope with the barriers and opportunities they face within seven national contexts. Specifically, to identify the aspects of social exclusion that most frequently have an impact on the lives of young adults with immigrant background and the variations that exist among immigrant group and over national contexts. This focus will be pursued by exploring a series of specific objectives:

Trends of Social Exclusion

The main objective is to examine the trends in the social exclusion of young adult immigrants. It is the primary interest of the researchers to identify the most significant factors contributing to their social exclusion, objectively and subjectively, and to determine the extents to which they vary with different groups, locations, and other variables. EUMARGINS will also try to assess the factors that may undermine or facilitate efforts (individual or societal) to tackle social exclusion (factors relevant to transition from being excluded to becoming included such as juridical and political, socio-cultural, economic and welfare policy constraints). Specifically, EUMARGINS' objectives here are to identify the aspects of social exclusion most frequently having impact on young adult migrants (such as relatively low income, unemployment, educational status, housing, health etc.), and to identify and rank the factors most commonly shown, in terms of background and reaction strategies, and the variations between groups and different national contexts.

Opportunities and Challenges

The main objective in this section is to identify and assess the opportunities, prospects, challenges and needs of young adult immigrants in seven urban metropolitan contexts. More specifically EUMARGINS will identify and assess barriers the young immigrants meet in achieving their life goals, and what help they need in order to realize their ambitions. We will also identify and assess factors that contribute to social mobility for these young people in comparison to their parents.


EUMARGINS will look into young immigrants' experiences of access to the labour market. The main objective here is to reveal how young adult immigrants cope with the opportunities in the local labour market in each metropolitan context. In relation to this, EUMARGINS will identify and assess whether the young adult immigrants achieve the jobs they are qualified for, or alternatively, if they are forced to take low-paid, low status jobs. We will look into the role of ethnic networks for access to the labour market. Another objective is to identify and assess how apparently successful young adults - in contrast to those young adults who have not entered the working market or education system (on a more stable basis) - perceive their situation.


This section is concerned with young immigrants' access to the education system or other forms of training, and, consequently, their career possibilities. Related to this, EUMARGINS will identify and assess employment offices' offers of courses and possibilities for work experience. We want to better understand how individual successes and failures with education, training and work are related to different access to social and cultural capital. Another important objective is to see to what extent the education system works to enhance integration, or whether it rather reinforces existing inequalities.

Specific Barriers

EUMARGINS will identify and assess the degree to which young adult immigrants in their attempts to access the labour market and/or the education system, have experienced discrimination. We will look into what role gender norms in the parental culture as compared to those in the peer group, in school and in other institutions, of the host society play in the experiences of inclusion and exclusion of these young people. In addition, we will analyze the role of different migration-trajectories (e.g. refugees and asylum seekers as compared to family reunions or labour migrants) for the participation or non-participation of our target group.

Identity Management

Different experiences of inclusion and exclusion have implications for young people's identity management and sense of belonging. If excluded, young immigrants have a sense of non-belonging to society which can have serious consequences. Therefore, it is important to identify and assess how young adults with immigrant backgrounds describe their feeling of identity and belonging, and how these definitions are related to their modes of participation or non-participation in society. More specifically, we will identify and assess what strategies young immigrants employ for their identity management, and how these strategies are related to their experiences of exclusion or inclusion (for example whether they experience exclusion because of the religious or ethnic group they belong to). The concept of multiple identities is important in this regard, as well as the role of modern communication technologies.

Life Conditions

Social exclusion does not concern only relation to labour market and education system. Young immigrants' life conditions in a broader sense play an equally important role by setting the background to other factors. EUMARGINS will identify and assess the young immigrants' life conditions in terms of housing, economic and social representation, and integration strategies. We will evaluate the degree of relative or absolute poverty (and also relative deprivation) experienced by young adult immigrants.

Access to public and private services and facilities

Non-governmental organisations and other kinds of public or private services might contribute to the transition from exclusion to inclusion for young immigrants. This project will identify and assess to what extent young immigrants receive help from non-governmental organisations of the majority society, such as Red Cross etc, or from immigrant organisations, and if so, what form this help takes.


EUMARGINS research will also look at other forms of formal and also informal participation. The overall objective in this regard, is to identify and assess what structural, juridical, economical and other factors make it possible for some young adults to become active participants. EUMARGINS will identify and assess formal and informal participation among young adult immigrants (e.g. political participation, civic participation, participation in cultural projects, youth subcultures etc.) A consideration of the differences in access to cultural and social capital among young adults who participate actively in the society at different levels versus those who do not will also be made.

Life Projects

Young adult immigrants' life projects is applied in a broad sense, including leisure time, cultural expressions etc. The specific aims here will be to identify and assess how young immigrants manage everyday life, and the organising of their time between jobs, education and leisure. We will seek to understand better how cultural expressions of young immigrants are related to distinct contemporary patterns of 'Us' and 'Them' in their local contexts. We will ask how young immigrants' potential forms of subcultural capital can enable integration into society in a later phase of their maturation. Another significant theme of investigation is the relationship between first versus second generation migrants' social capital and the following development of their life trajectories.

Project Results:
As mentioned previously, EUMARGINS results have been published in various forms throughout the continuation of the project, this ranges from books, scientific articles, policy briefs, policy report, and illustrative cases. Descriptions of some of our main publications are included in the section below:

1.3.1 Inclusion and Exclusion of Young Adult Migrants in Europe-Barriers and Bridges

Previous research on immigrants' participation in society has predominantly been from a nation-state perspective. In order to overcome this nation-state centrism, EUMARGINS research added a transnational dimension in their first book, Katrine Fangen, Ferdinand Andreas Mohn and Kirsten Fossan (eds.) "Inclusion and Exclusion of Young Adult Migrants in Europe-Barriers and Bridges" (Ashgate). It explores the inclusion and exclusion of young adult immigrants across a range of national contexts, including the Nordic welfare states, old colonial countries, Southern European nations and Eastern European region. Scrutinising legal, policy and historical sources, as well as statistics and earlier research, the volume engages with multiple social arenas and spheres, to integrate research and provide a cohesive investigation of the dynamics of each national setting. In addition to the chapters focused on individual national contexts, the book also provides a comprehensive cross-national analysis, developing a comparative perspective and explaining the overarching research framework.

The book reveals a complex picture of the national conditions for inclusion and exclusion of young adult immigrants in Europe. In the last chapter we have highlighted some of the main differences between the countries in our study along selected dimensions. A summary integrating all aspects of our depiction is hardly possible, but in the following concluding paragraphs taken from the final chapter of Fangen et al. (2010) we attempt to convey the core lessons of this work.

First, our analysis reveals that categories used in political arguments and the media are not innocent. In all countries, we see that the media and politicians have a tendency to target immigrants in general, and young immigrants in particular, as 'different'. The experience of continuously being marked as different serves to maintain a feeling of being excluded among young adults of immigrant background - both immigrants and descendants of immigrants - even among those who succeed in taking higher education or obtaining high-status employment. Negative representation in the mass media is more likely to reinforce exclusionary tendencies and hidden discrimination, and contributes not only to the feeling of being excluded, but also to reproducing the prevalent negative discourses. The efforts by young adult immigrants to construct a stable identity are met by different national cultures and degrees of tolerance. However, as a general phenomenon, young immigrants (and some descendants of immigrants) must face collective labels that often tend to exclude them symbolically from the majority group. Among our selected countries, the stigmatizing discourses tend to be most unpleasant in Italy, underlined by the political policies of the governing party. In France, the tendency not to mention immigrant background or ethnicity at all (except for politicians like Le Pen) might result in young descendants of immigrants feeling that their experiences of ethnic inequalities in the labour market are not acknowledged as a problem. Part of what we have achieved is a greater analytical awareness of the variety of the ways that boundaries of self and other are marked and drawn across European societies, and which categories seem to matter and which ones do not.

Second, there is the impact of legal regimes on the opportunities of young adult immigrants. The difficulty of accessing social and political rights is intertwined with, first, the ease of obtaining legal residency (either as a refugee, labour migrant or family reunited), and second, access to citizenship. Regarding citizenship laws, we see that the most liberal regimes are the Swedish and the French, which means that young immigrants find it easier to be included as part of the formal national community, including the rights and obligations linked to this. Norway and the UK are in an intermediate position, whereas in Estonia, Italy and Spain it is harder for young immigrants to gain citizenship and the security this implies. However, we have seen that the relationship between citizenship and inclusion is, at best, ambiguous. Citizenship enhances inclusion in terms of access to certain rights (such as the right to vote), but it will not automatically lead to an increased 'feeling of belonging': this relationship is often mediated by factors more directly associated with exclusion, in particular socioeconomic deprivation through low quality work or lack of employment. The predicament generated from this type of exclusion is, however, dependent on the welfare regime context.

Therefore, we argue that the social democratic welfare regimes of Norway and Sweden protect young adult immigrants from material deprivation and also secure their labour market conditions in the sense that the labour market is regulated with standards for contracts and salaries. But these conditions only protect those young immigrants who already have a residence permit, whereas newcomers are in a less favourable position. Another danger is that of being rendered passive through becoming a welfare client. Generous social benefits may also reduce the willingness of the unemployed to accept the jobs available (Lodovici 2000: 30). In the welfare regimes of Southern Europe, young adult immigrants have easy access to the informal economy, but they are at risk of being exploited as cheap labour with no regular contract. In fact, the conservative regimes of Southern Europe are based on a combination of regulations that protect high employment and relatively low support during non-employment. For young immigrants with few qualifications the problem is that they do not gain access to the regulated labour market, only to the informal economy. This is also related to the fact that access to a residence permit is harder. In general, the more regulated labour markets secure working conditions in terms of contracts which protects young immigrants from unreasonable dismissal and so on, but the informal economy makes it easier for those young immigrants who do not have higher education to find work.

Fourth, although the focus of our research is based on a broader conception of social exclusion (witnessed by the number of perspectives and dimensions addressed in this book), there is no doubt that material deprivation often plays a key role in the exclusion of young adult immigrants. Our survey shows that there are both constants and variances between these countries when it comes to determinants of socioeconomic success or failure. There is no doubt that education is a valuable resource in all countries. Norway and Sweden have the social democratic policy of actively establishing equal access to education for all, but this evidently does not hinder the tendency towards higher drop-out rates for young immigrants. There are different conditions within their education systems; while the French school system explicitly advocates a nation-building project, Estonia boasts a bilingual system. Still, it seems that socioeconomic background in many cases eliminates most of the difference between the minority and majority in education levels. We also saw that time of residence and age of migration are important. Significantly, however, some variations remain even when most control variables are inserted into the models, and we can only offer informed speculation about the reasons for this. There are obviously grounds to suspect that discrimination plays a role - a suspicion often generated by the devastating results for many African groups.

Finally, there is a need to try to decouple the automatic connection between migration and social problems. There is evidence that some young people from 'immigrant backgrounds' are being very successful, and untangling the different factors that lead to their inclusion into and exclusion from labour market, and education is crucial to unmask the false presumption of a necessary co-variation of ethnic minority status and marginalization. We have seen evidence that national background, time of residence, socioeconomic status of parents and several other factors intersect in the explanation of these individuals' performance in most of our national contexts.

1.3.2 Young Migrants: Exclusion and Belonging in Europe

The second phase of the project is based largely on the large qualitative data sample that was collected, consisting of life story interviews from seven different countries and some participant observations in each of these contexts, partly corresponding to what is known as multi-sited ethnography. The sample of life stories and participant observations are our primary data collection, while the review of laws, migration history, statistics and previous research from our first book serve as a backdrop. These two parts of the study were associated with each other, creating what is called an extended case method, which means that one establishes a connection between macro and micro and extends the observations in time and space. Our second book, Katrine Fangen, Thomas Johansson and Nils Hammarén (eds.) "Young Migrants: Exclusion and Belonging in Europe" (Houndmills, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan) is the result of such an endeavor. This book represents a research agenda directed towards the life experiences of young adult immigrants, as transmitted by the young adults themselves, and together with the analytical framework, the book seeks to uncover mechanisms at work in these individuals' lives. By focusing on different life arenas, like work, school, neighborhood, family and peer groups, we reveal how young adults experience being excluded in some settings, while being included in other settings.

The complex design of secondary data in combination with a large sample of life story interviews and participant observation from seven European countries, opens up for a sophisticated cross-national comparison. There are not many previous projects like this in a European context. Most cross-national comparisons are done by the use of statistical data. The mainly qualitative design is thus an important contribution to existing knowledge. By using qualitative data (and available statistics as background knowledge), EUMARGINS can better grasp the causes of social exclusion in an actual process perspective that involves actors' individual experiences, perceptions and expectations.

In Fangen et al. (2011), we have analysed young migrants' and descendants' experiences of exclusion and inclusion on different arenas in seven European countries. Since our study is qualitative and not quantitative, we will not say anything about the frequency of such experiences. But interesting though is what form these experiences might take.

We already knew in advance that the situation would be very different in the northern social democratic welfare states as compared to the southern continental and familistic model. But how is this shown through the life stories of the young migrants? We will summarise some of our main findings for each of the arenas discussed in this book in the following sections.

In many senses, we can say that the most vulnerable young people in terms of exclusion are those who migrate on their own, and have no network around them to help them in the transition to inclusion. Travelling in trucks and facing the suspicion at the border control, then having to wait while their asylum application is being considered, or alternatively, living with the uncertainty from day to day as an illegal migrant in Southern Europe, without rights, without family and friends; this is of course the uttermost example of exclusion. For these young people, there is no national state to which they can belong, and there is only a minimum of welfare goods and social security to protect them from poverty.

Immigration and citizenship law thus set the absolute limits of inclusion. These range from full citizenship to the circumstances of the 'illegal' or undocumented young people who is not entitled to realize their dreams. We have interviewed young people who are just waiting to be allowed to start their lives again. Terms of migration shapes the kind of life history that is possible. The life stories range from those young people who are trapped in a situation that has no solution, after a long and difficult migration experience, resulting in that they owe a lot of money, but then they are not allowed to stay; to others who embrace the opportunity, success and even benefit from their migration experience. What distinguishes these experiences are not exclusively individual differences. Rather, they are channeled to the conditions for inclusion as defined by immigration policies.

On the other hand, to have a passport or obtain legal rights to inclusion is no guarantee or protection against other forms of exclusion in the school system, the labor market or in the neighborhood. Europe relates to immigrants through hierarchies of belonging. The way this process of screening is done varies from country to country. In this book, we have focused on the importance of migration and citizenship status for framing the lives of young immigrants, and for setting the conditions for membership.

Young adult immigrants cross not only geographical and political boundaries, but also biographical and relational: They are moving into a new country, but also on its way to becoming adults. The dual flight increases their vulnerability as a generation, although it may strengthen them as individuals. The young people we have talked to tell us about their feelings of contempt and rejection, but also about their own maturity and experience that makes it possible to manage. But, as we have seen, their efforts to achieve independence and significance are not always welcome.

Religion has, as Hirschman has pointed out, three functions for immigrants in Western countries: refuge, respect and resource. For many, the link back to the country they left - all they had cherished, that's what gives comfort in everyday life. Without religion, many felt totally unprotected and without meaning in life. Respect for other's religion is absolutely fundamental. Although we can shout loudly about freedom of speech and the right to burn the Koran in public as a political statement, it is also important to ensure that young people can attend to their religion. Very few Muslims are budding terrorists. Allowing young immigrants, Muslims and others to say their opinion is absolutely essential if we are to achieve a peaceful coexistence in Europe and a real democracy. We must also be open to opinions from those who have not or will not get citizenship. To allow expression from so-called illegal immigrants is important so that we can see the complexity of a situation most people know all too little about - namely what it means to live in a country for years almost completely stripped of fundamental social rights.

Moreover, political participation is obviously important for those who have citizenship and who have the real rights to participate in the political arena. Here we see that many people find that the policy does not speak for them, or that those who take the step to join the political experience will only be used as the list fills, and no one is actually interested in what they have to say (Fangen, 2009: 104). For many young migrants, different kinds of informal political participation feel more relevant than the formal ones, examples include political demonstrations or taking part in blog discussions on the Internet. To be heard, young adult immigrants should be seen: not only as dangerous visible minorities, but as potential active citizens.

Our study reveals first of all that in all countries young migrants and descendants experience various forms of social exclusion in the form of bullying, teasing or more generally a feeling of being marked as different by other pupils at school. Young migrants and descendants who attend schools where young people with ethnic minority background is the majority feel more included in this sense. However, despite their higher feeling of being included in the peer network, we see a very visible trend of young migrants and descendants who deliberately choose another school than the immigrant-dense neighborhood school when they start at Upper Secondary. The reason is the stigma of the minority school, the high density of social problems and so on, which makes going to this school a major barrier against later success in higher education or at the labor market.

Consequently, we see young people (or their parents) in Estonia who, if they have the chance, choose the Estonian school instead of the Russian one, or in Norway and Sweden a more central school instead of the neighbourhood school of the immigrant-dense suburb. In the UK, Spain and Italy a major difference goes between attending the private versus the public school, however, the first option is not a real alternative for most immigrant parents since it is far too expensive.

Thus, we see that in all our selected countries, there is a stigma attached to some secondary upper schools, be it the Russian schools in Estonia, the immigrant-dense school of the suburb in France, Norway and Sweden, or the public school (as opposed to the private) in the UK, Spain and Italy, and accordingly, there are more immigrants in the schools that are associated with a stigma. In some countries, like Norway and Sweden, it is fairly easy for the most ambitious immigrant youth to choose another school instead, in other countries, like the ones where the major division goes between public and private, this is not an option open for everyone, as it is linked to financial resources, also not all countries follow the policy of so-called "free school choice".

However, it is not only the aspect of "good" or "bad" upper secondary upper schools that matters in our selected countries. Another major division goes between what kinds of policy society in general and schools in particular practice in order to include young immigrants. There is a big difference between the assimilationist policy in France, the integrationist in Norway and Sweden, the multicultural in the UK, the segregationist in Estonia, and we could add, the lack of any deliberate integration policy in Italy and Spain. In general, we can say that the voices of the young migrants and descendants we have interviewed reveal that the same system can be good for some and bad for others. Take for example the assimilationist approach in France. For those who embrace the policy of assimilationism, the opportunity to be included when demonstrating your will to become French, is seen positively by those who want to assimilate. However, for those who want to be a part of their ethnic community or for whom religious affiliation e.g. to Islam matters a lot, then this policy might be seen as excluding, as their cultural difference is not valued. Our case stories reveal that some might despite the policy of assimilation actually feel most included in the immigrant-dense neighborhood. Here difference from the French majority is the norm more than the exception. We have interviewed several young people who have grown up in such a suburb and feel well there. The problem for them is the stigma of this neighborhood when applying for jobs. They have the feeling it is the address more than their ethnic minority background which leads to discrimination.

The segregationist system in Estonia (and many other Eastern European countries) exaggerates the division between Russian speaking minorities and the Estonian speaking majority in the Estonian society. Having attended a Russian speaking school might again be a stigma when applying for jobs, but also a hindrance when going to University, since teaching there is given in Estonian, thus giving those who have attended Estonian school an advantage. Again, we see that many feel more included in Russian schools, but feel this as a barrier for their later career. Those who attend the Estonian schools instead report more bullying in their youth, but on the other hand, have a greater success later on.

For the very few asylum seekers in Estonia, the language division of schools is a major obstacle against integration in society, since no offers are provided for newcomers, and they must attend Estonian (or Russian) schools where they do not understand anything of what is being said. By contrast, the Swedish and Norwegian systems give reception classes for migrant youth during the first year after arrival, before they are transferred into the ordinary school system. This is meant to give them some knowledge of the majority language before attending ordinary classes. Language acquisition for newcomers is hard in these countries as well, but easier than in Estonia where no help is given during the first period of settlement.

The other countries in our project all have majority languages which are more known on an international basis. This means that some migrants have an easier way to inclusion in terms of language fluency, which is very important in order to succeed both in school and at the labor market. Consequently, this helps migrants from Latin America in Italy and Spain and migrants from former colonies to France and the UK. However, for migrants from other countries, language might still be a major obstacle in these countries as well (maybe with the exception of the UK, as very many migrants have at least a basic understanding of English). Barcelona also has the additional obstacle of the local language Catalan, which is something that many Latin American migrants did not expect in advance. In all countries, the will to learn the local or national language, and the ability to do this quickly, is often a major factor leading to the success of some and the failure of those who of different reasons do not manage.

School systems also open up for differing opportunities of identity construction. With multicultural or integrationist systems, the young migrants and descendants feel it is no problem to hold double or hybrid identities, whereas the assimilationist system is not as open to this. Riots in France can be seen in this light, when difference is not acknowledged, and difference has consequences for where one ends up in the system; then one must riot in order to be heard. This is a great contrast to the UK; the most multicultural of our selected countries. Most of the young migrants we have interviewed there do feel well in terms of the great variety of ethnic backgrounds visible in public spaces, but even so, some feel there is an ethnic hierarchy which leads to skepticism towards some groups. This hierarchy is not only visible in terms of how white people relate to people from different ethnic minorities, also a colored migration controller act suspiciously towards the migrants from the Caribbean, thus embracing the division in the British society between those who are legitimate members and those who are not. In the Nordic countries many young migrants feel at home in Norway, but even so define themselves either according to ethnic background or according to more general labels such as "foreigner". The reason is that they feel that being hundred percent Norwegian or Swedish is not possible for them even when they are born in the country, because they look different.

Labor market statistics in all countries reflect the ethnic hierarchies of the respective societies. In many of the Western European countries, Africans are at the bottom of this hierarchy, while immigrants from the South Asian countries are at the top. Eastern European migrants to Western European countries are perceived very differently in our countries. While Albanians are stigmatized in Southern Europe, they are not necessarily so in the UK. In general, labor migrants from Eastern European countries are embraced as cheap labor. In Norway, our interviewees from Eastern European countries and the Balkan feel less stigmatized than our interviewees from the Middle East and from Africa. Being white and European is an asset for inclusion.

The financial crisis also has consequences for the perceived opportunities and for the hierarchies of belonging. This has hardened the situation severely in Spain and the UK, as well as in Estonia. Some of our interviewees in London have to work from early morning to late afternoon in order to earn their living, despite the fact that they came to the UK in order to study. Eastern European immigrants do not earn well enough to send money back home, which was the idea of migrating in the first place. Higher education has become more expensive than just a few years ago. Still higher education is free in the Nordic countries, but in Sweden a discussion has stated the possibility to introduce a study fee. The rising unemployment leads to unbearable conditions for young migrants who are forced to take the jobs offered to them, no matter how bad the conditions related to the job are. In this respect, we see that young migrants in the Nordic countries (and to an extent in France) have a better situation, since they can enjoy the different offers available for unemployed youth, including social benefits, internships and training opportunities.

In the sense of inclusion in the labor market, we see a clear difference between our countries regarding different categories of migrants. Illegal migrants have a much easier situation in Italy and Spain, since these countries have large secondary labor markets, which make it quite easy for clandestines to get a job, albeit the social security is very low. For illegal migrants, there are not many opportunities for work in Norway and Sweden except for illegal jobs like prostitution and drug dealing. Young non-returnable migrants we have interviewed do not want to go into illegal businesses and therefore they have no opportunities at all, except for living at the detention centre. As for legal migrants, the situation is much better in the Nordic countries. The labor market participation is much higher than in the other countries, especially in Norway, but this must also be seen in light of the financial crisis which this far has not hit Norway much.

In all our selected countries, young migrants and descendants tend to feel they have to perform much better than the majority young people in order to obtain the same results. Also, some tend to act strategically by choosing educations where there already is multicultural variation, thus minimizing the chance to be discriminated against. We see clear labor market segmentation in all the countries, according to ethnic background. Specific ethnic backgrounds tend to be over-represented in specific niches of the labor market. We have already mentioned the tendency of migrants to be represented in the secondary labor markets, especially in the Southern European countries. But in addition they are over-represented in the textile industry, in the service sector and in Spain also in agriculture. In Sweden and Norway, many migrants are in the social and health sector, whereas less migrants work in the private sector (finance and so on). In the UK and Estonia by contrast, being an entrepreneur is often the main road to success, since there is not much social security, starting one's own business is a way to make a living. In Spain and Italy migrants are forced to start working in early adulthood, in order to get enough salary to get their residence permit renewed. This is a major obstacle against taking higher education.

1.3.3 Scientific Articles

The EUMARGINS project has published several scientific articles that have also laid the foundation for the books listed above.

Katrine Fangen (2009): Social Exclusion of young adults of immigrant background-The relational, the spatial and the political dimensions

While research on social exclusion tends to focus on education and employment, this article focuses on the relational, spatial and political dimensions of social exclusion. These dimensions suggest a highlighting of the individual's feeling of belonging, identity and acceptance. The main point in this article is to emphasize how young people with immigrant backgrounds define their situation and how they develop strategies to avoid being excluded. The empirical examples are taken from a project on social inclusion and exclusion of young adults with immigrant background in seven national contexts.

Katrine Fangen (2010): Social Exclusion and Inclusion of Young Immigrants-Presentation of an Analytical Framework

Social exclusion is a term which was introduced in the social sciences in the early 1990s in order to extend the focus beyond poverty by focusing on the relation between the individual and the society. During later years, it has been common to speak of a new social exclusion perspective, which is better fit to analyze the more heterogeneous, multicultural and complex society. This article focuses on the social exclusion in different arenas, thus underlining the multi-dimensional aspect of social exclusion. The underlying question is: 'What is it that contributes to social exclusion of young adult immigrants in different social settings?' and 'How do young adult immigrants with different backgrounds experience social exclusion in different social arenas?' The article distinguishes between educational exclusion, labour market exclusion, spatial exclusion, relational exclusion and finally, socio-political exclusion. The combination of information from macro-oriented quantitative research and its focus on agency together make a holistic picture of social exclusion which underlines its dynamic, complex, multi-dimensional character. Some of the qualitative data used in this article is derived from EUMARGINS.

Thomas Johansson and Nils Hammarén (2010): The art of choosing the right tram-A study of urban segregation, choice of school and young people's life plans

When discussing barriers to integration and young people's choice of school, research often focuses on language skills, cultural capital, supportive environments and other more obvious, distinct and material aspects that have an impact on educational achievement. In the present study, we have instead chosen to look at how young immigrants construct their inner career landscapes and life-plans, and how this relates to their perception of ethnicity, neighbourhood and identity. The sample used here consists of altogether twenty individuals. The interviews were used to explore certain designated dimensions and processes. All interviews were conducted in the school environment, in classrooms and other locations. The students attended two different inner-city schools. A narrative-sociological approach is used in the analysis. The young people's perceptions and narratives are analysed in relation to concepts such as: territorial stigmatization, identity, self-perception and modifications of life plans. The findings show that the feelings of otherness which originates in housing conditions, experiences of exclusion and the everyday life of many immigrants, are transposed into the school area and transformed into strategies and life plans.

Thomas Johansson and Nils Hammarén (2011): The art of choosing the right tram: Schooling, segregation and youth culture

In this article, they study how young people with an immigrant background (first and second generation), which attend schools that can be considered more 'Swedish' experience the transition from a 'multicultural district' to the city centre. The empirical study was conducted in a large Swedish city, where the students attended two different programmes. In the analysis, we take a narrative approach, with student movements in time and space analysed in relation to concepts such as territorial stigmatization, alienation, bodily practices and identity positions. Findings show that the students often compare the city school with other schools - the city school described as a 'white' school, the other schools as 'immigrant schools'. The different schools are clearly placed on a status hierarchy, with the city school at the top and other schools somewhere below. The students have confronted and succeeded in transgressing social and cultural boundaries. However, the feeling of otherness that originates in housing conditions, experiences of exclusion and the everyday life of many immigrants is transposed, so to speak, to the school area and transformed into strategies for handling exclusion and otherness.

Thomas Johansson and Rita Olofsson (2011): The art of becoming 'Swedish': Immigrant youth, school, careers and life plans

When discussing barriers to integration, we often focus on language skills, cultural capital, supportive environments and other more obvious, distinct and material aspects that have an impact on educational achievement. In the present study, we have instead chosen to look at how young immigrants construct their life plans, and how this relates to their perceptions of ethnicity, neighbourhood and identity. The sample used here consists of a total of 10 individuals. The interviews were used to explore certain designated dimensions and processes. All interviews were conducted in the school environment, in classrooms and other locations within the school. The students attended two different vocationally oriented study programmes: one focused on health promotion, the other on pre-school children. A narrative-sociological approach is used in the analysis. The young people's perceptions and narratives are analysed in relation to concepts such as: territorial stigmatization, identity, inclusion/exclusion and life plans. The key finding is that these young people try to adapt to certain normative expectations connected to the notion of Swedishness. Being 'in sync' with this normative conception leads to self-confidence, whereas being 'out-of-sync' leads to low self-esteem.

Katrine Fangen and Brit Lynnebakke (2011): Three conceptions of Norwegianness: Descent, cultural practice and citizensip

The article discusses Norwegianness defined by descent, cultural practice and citizenship. The theoretical starting point is Brubaker's "groupness" concept. Empirically, the article is based on interviews with young adult immigrants and young adult descendants of immigrants. All the interviewees are visible minorities. Starting wtih the concept of a Norwegian category that can be filled with varying degrees of "groupness," we explore the interviewees' conceptualizations of what defines Norwegianness. Whilst many of the interviewees connect the boundaries of Norwegianness to descent and cultural practice, few of them define Norwegianness as partaking in a shared political community or by having Norwegian citizenship. As of today, current conceptions of Norwegianness among people with an ethnic minority background seem to contrast "non-ethnic" conceptualizations of patriotism and citizenship launched in academic debate in recent years. Among most of the informants, ethnicity seems to be at the core of their understanding of "full Norwegianness." Through adhering to certain cultural practices regarded as "typical Norwegian" and spending time with ethnic Norwegians, the informants can acquire a certain extent of Norwegianness. But this culturally defined concept of Norwegianness involves a continuum that ends at "very Norwegian" rather than "Norwegian" for those with an ethnic minority background. For most of the informants, being ethnic Norwegian seems to be a prerequisite for being perceived as hundred percent Norwegian.

Les Back and Shamser Sinha (2012): New Hierarchies of Belonging

The notion of the 'crisis of multiculturalism' is being used to justify draconian modes of regulation, scrutiny and the surveillance of migrant communities. Through the story of a young migrant from the EUMARGINS research sample this paper explores the ways in which hierarchies of belonging are emerging within the social landscape of contemporary London. The paper argues that the debate about population mobility needs to transcend the 'migrancy problematic' and identify how the ordering of humanity works in a globalised and neo-liberal context. The paper discusses the contemporary racism and using the work of Franz Fanon it is argued that this new situation replays some of the patterns of colonial relations. The argument ends with evidence that critical forms of reckoning are also emerging that promise a new kind of anti-racist politics.

1.3.4 Theses

There were three students who wrote their master's thesis as part of the EUMARGINS project. Summaries of two of the theses are listed below, and the third one is still being finalized.

Sekina Helen Finne (2010): Indian Descendants in Elite Education

The Norwegian title of the thesis is 'Indiske etterkommere I eliteutdanninger. En kvalitativ studie av utdanningsvalg blant indiske etterkommere I eliteutdanninger.' It is based on ten in-depth interviews with students in elite educations at the University of Oslo.

Descendants of Indians Excel in Norwegian Higher Education

Most people with an Indian background in Norway immigrated in the 1970s as labour migrants and later through family reunification. In later years, a few highly skilled Indians have immigrated on the basis of specialist permits. The descendants of the Indian labour migrants have excelled in higher education. Their participation percentage is higher than that of ethnic Norwegians and other minority groups such as Pakistani and Vietnamese descendants. Additionally, Indian descendants are more likely than ethnic Norwegians to complete higher education on the master's level.

According to previous research, students with an Indian background more often chose dentistry, medicine and psychology than ethnic Norwegians or students with a Pakistani or Vietnamese background. All Sekina's informants are in elite health profession fields: psychology (psychologist degree), medicine, pharmacy dentistry.

Social Background Does Not Explain Educational Performance

Indian immigrants in Norway represent one of the two most educated immigrant groups in Norway (Vietnamese immigrants being the other). Despite this, previous research has shown that social background cannot explain the educational performance of Indian descendants in Norway. This is also the case in Finne's study.

Half of the informants have a high social background, half of them somewhat lower social background. Overall, the educational level of the fathers in Finne's study is high, whereas the mothers' education is slightly lower. Many of the fathers have typical working class jobs in Norway. Some run their own businesses. Almost all of the mothers have working class jobs, but some are self-employed or work in middle-class jobs such as nursing. It seemed that most of the parents were relatively well-off; some of the informants reported frequent holidays, economic support and large houses and fancy cars.

Based on the informants' reports, practically all the parents in the study had high ambitions on their children's behalf. Regardless of their own educational level, the parents in the study expected their children to pursue higher education. This concurs with research on Indian immigrants in Britain where the parents' educational ambitions for their children also were high regardless of their own educational background.

Some of the parents have influenced strongly the particular education of their child. The descendants' choice of an elite education is particularly striking. Generally speaking, social reproduction is very high in elite education.

Since social background cannot explain Indian descendants' performance, other explanations have been suggested: that the parents' migration was motivated by a wish for a better future for one's children, belief in education as a means for success, high parental ambitions, tight family relations and having an extra drive for working hard. Finne looks into these and other explanations in her analysis.

Ida Kvittingen (2011): Equal or Unique Employee? 'Visible minorities' job seeking experiences

The Norwegian title of the thesis is "Lik eller unik arbeidstaker?" The qualitative study is based on ten in-depth interviews with visible minorities who have recently finished their master degree in either social or natural sciences and are entering the job market.

Background to the study

The study seeks to determine how young people with visible minority background transition from higher education to the labour market. Most of the informants are not born in Norway, and some expect to be met with skepticism in the labour market because of their name, appearance and/or religious affiliation. Others see their own minority background as an asset. Guiding research questions for the thesis are how these young people reflect on the opportunities that are available to them in the labour market and how they present themselves to prospective employers. Kvittingen's main findings are summarised in a description of four strategies that young migrants and descendants use when applying for jobs.

Early experiences as a guide

Job seekers create an image of themselves to prospective employers through both their job applications and various forms of personal contact (ie. the job interview, telephone calls, and so forth). How the job seekers present themselves, depend on the view they have of opportunities that minorities have in the labour market. Some of Kvittingen's informants believed that they had equal opportunities as ethnic Norwegian job seekers, while others think they stand out either positively or negatively.

To understand how each of them developed this impression, Kvittingen examined what early experiences the informants had with inclusion and exclusion. Based on these experiences, the informants had adopted different coping strategies and varying degrees of social support to deal with the adversity they faced. The methods they use to resolve these experiences have impacted what approach they choose to use in order to enter the labour market. Through these experiences some of the informants gained confidence that their ethnicity would not be a hindrance to them in the labour market, in fact being a visible minority would add value to their applications. Other informants had negative experiences and therefore were keen to highlight their similarities with the majority population.

1.3.5 Policy Briefs and EU Policy Report

EUMARGINS has published six policy briefs that cover the following topics: immigration discourses, citizenship regimes, labour market, ethnic school segregation, irregular migration and political participation. The first policy brief "Categorisations and Discourses" focuses on immigration discourses in public discourse and bureaucratic practices, aiming to raise awareness about the fact that European-wide immigration policies will only be effective when crucial concepts such as 'immigrants' and 'descendants' are comprehended similarly across borders. "Citizenship Regimes: Consequences for Inclusion and Exclusion of Young Adult Immigrants in Europe," the second policy brief, presents a discussion of citizenship laws in the seven different national contexts. The brief argues that the citizenship policies in Europe vary too much, and that the logical extension of EU-wide cooperation is to harmonize citizenship policies. The third policy brief, "Is discrimination An Issue? Young Adults with Immigration Background on the Labour Market" looks at labour market discrimination and 'ethnic penalties' as factors of exclusion for young adults with immigration background. The brief concludes that the EU should encourage benchmarking and best practice exchange among national agents in the field of labour market discrimination, with a special focus on young descendants. The fourth policy brief, "Ethnic School Segregation: Effects and Policies" argues that lower educational outcomes at 'minority schools' is primarily caused by socioeconomic factors. Elaborating on this premise, politicians should consequently implement desegregation policies that reduce inequality based on socioeconomic factors at the most ethnically segregated minority schools. The fifth policy brief, "Inside and outside simultaneously: Recognising the vulnerability of irregular migrants in Europe," seeks to recognize the vulnerability of young adult irregular migrants in Europe. While irregular migrants are supposed to be recognised and protected by international human rights legislation, it is not always the case that they are socially recognised in the societies they reside in. The paradoxical situation is that these irregular migrants are simultaneously inside territorially and outside socially, often feeling that they lack a meaningful existence. The final policy brief in the series, "Political inclusion and participation" looks at the different forms of political participation of immigrants. It searches for the factors that influence participation and political inclusion of young immigrants and draws comparisons and highlights differences among seven European countries.

The comprehensive EUMARGINS policy report aimed to inform the current EU policy debate and policy framework in the areas of social inclusion and exclusion of young people with immigrant background. The policy report presents a summary of current EU policy frames, discusses how EUMARGINS research results can guide policy and concludes with concrete policy recommendations as well as possible best practice exchanges based on the seven national contexts in the study. As a result of our research, the following observations for social inclusion policies are drawn:

- There is a wide diversity in experiences of inclusion and exclusion among young migrants and descendants ranging from high success in the labour market and private life to marginalisation and exclusion from all major areas of formal participation. Structural conditions of the host country (including citizenship legislation, migration policies, integration policies or lack thereof, structure of the educational system and labour market), as well as migrants' demographic, socio-economic and socio-cultural characteristics play an important role here. Therefore, policy solutions must take into account the specifics of each national setting as well as target the most vulnerable groups of young migrants in each country.

- Our research show that migration status, class, ethnicity, religion, age and gender are all factors that interact and create segmentation and segregation along specific lines. More often than not several of these factors influence the processes of inclusion or exclusion of young migrants. Ethnic and socio-economic segregation often overlap and multiple discrimination appears at the conjuncture of ethnicity, religion and gender.

- Politics of identity: words, frames, categorisations and discourses play an important role in determining the structural and socio-cultural terms for inclusion or exclusion. Categories such as 'immigrants' are created and racially scripted forms of personhood that come to life at a particular conjuncture.

- Education and labour market integration are the policy areas that play the most important role for young migrants and their descendants in their double processes of simultaneously entering a new country and entering adulthood.

1.3.6 Illustrative Cases

A unique contribution from the EUMARGINS project was the illustrative cases, also known as photo essays, which were published on the EUMARGINS public web pages on a weekly basis. Each partner selected three cases from their respective interview samples that represented the diversity (those who were more included and those who were more excluded) in their research and then they wrote brief description of the individual; the individual's life story per se, for instance, highlighting aspects of their migratory history, transitions in their life from periods of exclusion to inclusion and describing their hopes and dreams for those who seek a better present and future. The cases were illustrated by photographs either taken by the researcher or the individual themselves. Some of these cases were also used to thread together the chapters of the second book published by EUMARGINS.

United Kingdom

Building a home in London-Joseph's Story

Born in Kinshasa, Congo, Joseph migrated to London as a refugee at the age of eight. He is now 18 years old and has UK citizenship status. The London research team met Joseph numerous times, and he told them about growing up as a young migrant in London.

Charlynne-On the Inside

Charlynne Bryan is a 22 year old woman from Dominica living in Letyon, East London. She is often assumed to be 'Jamaican' and interpolated as part of the black community coming to London in the mid-twentieth century. As such, she has had to learn to put up with misrecognitions and misunderstandings. Charlynne came to Britain as an 18 year old student and obtained a first class degree in Psychosocial Studies at the University of East London in 2009. Her participation in the EUMARGINS project has offered a way for her to document her experiences; she has kept a scrapbook and written a poem, and shares parts of her life with us through words and pictures.

African Queen-Young Woman from Ethiopia in London

'African Queen,' which was the name the informant gave to herself to be referred to in this study, fled from Ethiopia in 2003. At the time she was 16 years old. She has now been living in London for seven years, but has still not obtained any legal status to reside in the UK. African Queen's immediate problem is the health and safety of her two year old baby. She lives in local council provided emergency accommodation that has no heating and is damp.


Born in Norway-Pakistani Parents; Fatima's Story

Fatima is a 25-year old woman who has been willing to share with us her experiences of growing up in Norway with parents from Pakistan. It is based upon various interviews with her, a short story authored by herself, as well as pictures she has taken and shared with us. Fatima's thoughts and pictures reveal how feelings of inclusion and exclusion change over time and how they may relate to both parent's migration story and one's own sense of isolation or community.

Coping with Illegalization in Norway-Jengar's Story

Jengar was born in the Iraqi part of Kurdistan in 1984. He came to Norway as an asylum seeker in 2002. When we met him he had been in Norway for eight years. Having been rejected asylum for the second time, Jengar was supposed to leave the country, but he did not perceive it as safe to return to Iraq. His only option was to live in the deportation camp as an illegalized migrant.

Adapting and Integrating-Haile's Story

Born in Central Ethiopia, Haile has only lived in Norway for four years after immigrating to Norway through family reunification with his mother. He is an ambitious young man who has undergone significant hardship to pursue a career that would meet his expectations as well as cultural background.


Fatos-An Irregular Refugee in Sweden

Fatos is 22 years old, born in Macedonia, raised in Kosovo and, currently, living as a refugee, in hiding, in Sweden. After fleeing his home in Kosovo, he lives with his mother in a health centre run by an independent network in Gothenburg. As his story unfolds, one becomes acutely aware of the suffering and trauma he has had to overcome and how optimism has helped him dream big.

Efraim-A Desire to Fit In

Efraim is twenty years old and was born in Iran. He arrived in Sweden eight years ago through family reunification. After facing initial difficulties adjusting to life in Sweden he has now gradually adapted to the new environment. He has begun to plan his future and aims to continue his education and become more independent. What is interesting about Efraim is that he emphasizes "the importance of becoming more Swedish" as a requirement to fit in to Swedish society and culture.

Amon-Search for Acceptance

Amon is twenty-two years old and was born in Uzbekistan. Several factors led Amon and his family to leave Uzbekistan when he was twelve years old. His journey to Sweden was circuitous, and, unfortunately, his immediate family still resides in France, one of the many destinations on his final route to Sweden. Initially, Amon lived on the periphery, however, through the Swedish Scout Organization, Amon has been able to reinvent himself by attending university classes and now sees himself as finally being accepted into Swedish society.


Ksenjia-A Budding Young Fashion Designer in Estonia

Ksenija represents a typical case of a successful young adult Russian living in Estonia. She has completed her higher education and is now working as a fashion designer. What is interesting about her story is that she has used her ethnic roots as a positive tool in life.

Oxana-Between two 'homes'

Oxana is originally from Ukraine and has lived in Estonia for six years. Similar to other immigrants in Estonia she has Estonian roots; her grandfather was Estonian. She came to Estonia to pursue a higher quality of education based on her brother's suggestion. She explains that despite moving to Estonia she has retained her Ukranian identity and enjoys being involved in the Ukranian diaspora.

Asylum Seekers-Challenges for Estonia in a Post-Modern Europe

The Illuka Refugee Centre is located in the Estonian forest near the Russian border. It is isolated and difficult to reach without personal transportation.

The Centre houses several asylum seekers, some of which were interviewed in this story. There were four young men chosen for this story, three of which were from Afghanistan and one from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They described their experiences at the Centre, the difficulties they face residing there and their feelings of exclusion, but chose not to go into detail about their journey to Estonia or about their families.

All four of them assessed Estonian asylum policy and unanimously agreed that Estonia had to redevelop it, particularly now that they are a member of the European Union and will have to expect an increase in the number of immigrants to the country.


Marc-The Contrasting Worlds of Private and Public Education

Marc is eighteen, was born in the Philippines and moved to Spain at six years old. His story seems typical of many young immigrants growing up in Spain today, his father came first, spending three years living alone and working in order to facilitate the rest of his family's move.

Both of Marc's parents are from the Philippines yet Marc has been educated almost entirely under the Spanish system. He describes in great depth the differences he observes between the quality of education and students in public and private education. Since enrolling in a private school he has begun to construct a future for himself and recognizes the need to establish a positive friend circle.

Suelí-Should I Stay or Should I Go

Suelí is a 29-year-old, of Brazilian origin, who has lived in Barcelona since the age of 24. She emigrated in search of a better future; however, following the financial crisis in Spain it had become more difficult for her to save money and what she manages to gather she uses to meet her family in Brazil. Neither is she sure whether she will continue living in Barcelona, although she likes it and feels adapted to the local conditions, she has failed to establish social networks.

King-Education and Social Networks as Key Factors for Inclusion

King is a 24-year-old from the Dominican Republic who came to live in Barcelona two and a half years ago, after having obtained a grant to study for his master's degree in International Relations. His story emphasizes the importance of education, participation in associations and social networks, all made possible through the economic and emotional support of his transnational family.


Isabelle-'I Can Do It'

Isabelle is of Sino-Laotian origin. The youngest of a family of four children, Isabelle is the only one among her siblings to have been born in France and to have been given a French name. She spent her childhood in the French neighbourhood of Haut Du Lièvre, but eventually decided to leave, due to the negative impression of the neighbourhood among outsiders, to pursue her education elsewhere. She credits much of her current success as a psychologist to the diversity of her former neighbourhood.

Lucie-A New Life, but a Good One

Lucie is a 27 year old young woman from Morocco who arrived in France through family reunification with her husband, a French national. Among the French interview sample, she was the only Muslim interviewee who wore a headscarf. Her story reveals that of a young woman who has successfully integrated into French society and is satisfied with the new life she has created here.

Hervé-An Active Citizen

Hervé is a 24 year old young man of Moroccan origin who is currently unemployed and looking for work. He has been married for two and a half years and has a young daughter. What is striking about him is his commitment to helping other young people in his neighbourhood, Haut du Lièvre, as vice-president of the youth community centre and involved in several other civic projects.


King Jefe-I did not want...

King Jefe is a 23 year old young man, who was born in Ecuador in a middle class family composed of two parents, himself and an older brother. After his mother developed cancer and moved to Italy, he began to involve himself in an organisation of Latino youths or commonly known as a 'gang.' When his mother discovered his, she brought him over to Italy, where his involvement in gang activity did not end. He has been in and out of jail for drug dealing and smuggling as well as some more violent crimes. Unfortunately, he has not had the support network to guide him in life.

Mahmoud-'Just 20 euro...nothing else'

Mahmoud was born in Morocco in a rural large family composed of his parents and four brothers and sisters. His father migrated to Italy in 1975 while his wife and family continued to live in Morocco. At the time of the interview Mahmoud had lived in Italy since 2000 after joining his father. His migration experience is a typical one of migrants from the rural countryside in Morocco who move to Italy to join a family member in order to support them in building a better livelihood and income. After he had completed his compulsory education, Mahmoud's father wanted him to find work. Mahmoud had different plans for his life and wanted to build a better future through pursuing his studies.

Florian-'The support of your family'

Florian was born in Bucharest, Romania, in a relatively wealthy family. His father is a retired officer from the Ministry of Work and Employment and his mother is a primary school teacher. Before Ceasescu's regime collapsed his father resigned and in the following years he started his own real estate business with strong linkages to Italy. After completing his secondary schooling, Florian joined his two brothers living in Italy. He soon built a life there and established a construction business alongside his brother. Throughout his struggles he always had the support from his family.

Potential Impact:
1.4 Potential impact of the project

This project seeks to provide a deeper understanding of the reasons why some young adult immigrants find their way to participate as active citizens in society, whereas others struggle to achieve access to the majority society's institutions. The phenomena of social exclusion can be described as a process by which certain individuals or groups of individuals lose their foothold in important spheres of society, often with severe consequences for their quality of life. A marginalisation process is typically thought to involve a multiplicity of problems that interact in ways that make their total impact more harmful than suggested by simply adding them up. It is a process of 'losing ground' in a number of arenas simultaneously, such as the labour market, the social network, and the political and cultural life. There is ample evidence that labour market marginality tends to spill over to other spheres of social life. In particular, labour market marginality has been shown to cause social isolation and poverty, almost regardless of the institutional structure and welfare system of society.

Social exclusion specifically of immigrant youth is a major problem in many European states and cities today. This accounts especially for emergency migrants from Africa, but also second generation youth for example in France, UK and Estonia. This current project includes an analysis of social exclusion processes of first generation non-EU immigrants as well as EU-born second generation young people with immigrant background.

Thus, carried by these reasons, social exclusion has been at the top of the political agenda of the European Union since the early 1990s. Struggle against labour market marginality discussed above and discrimination has become an integral part of EU policy. Although the treatment of non-EU immigrants is still the responsibility of member states, with the increasing scope of free movement of labour on one side and struggle against social discrimination and barriers in labour market on the other side, EU has come to the point where problems connected to social policy aspects and immigration cannot be solved on national level.

The process of Europeanization of social policy is now evident and EU has become a major player next to member states in the area of immigrant integration and social inclusion. One of the top priorities in EU agenda is a development and implementation of set of principles in developing social cohesion policies in member states and on EU level for inclusion and integration of constantly growing immigrant population. With the emergence of second generation immigrant population, EU is increasingly involved in setting the agenda of immigrant integration in member states. In Amsterdam Treaty the struggle against social exclusion is defined as a Union Objective. Member states have been asked to prepare national action plans to combat social exclusion and in Lisbon Summit in 2000 the need to organise cooperation in a way to address effectively social exclusion in member states was underlined.

Therefore, it is most relevant to carry out research on immigrant youth social exclusion simultaneously on a European and national level to understand what type of cooperation can be done across nations in Europe. Comparative analysis of the process of social exclusion in member states pursued in this project provides important insights for EU policy makers into structural aspects and national contexts as well as policy initiatives of countries involved. By comparing trajectories in seven different European countries the project has revealed different models of exclusion and inclusion in light of different immigration and integration policies and socioeconomic and demographic situations in European states. Even more, the composition of participating countries has provided a large variety of immigration and integration types of countries ranging from welfare states of Northern Europe to countries with relatively recent immigration problems such as Italy and Spain to old imperial countries of France and UK with history of colonial immigration. And last but not least, Estonia, with its history of political, economic and social transition from communist planned economy to democratic market economy accompanied by large proportion of Russian-speaking immigrants of Soviet period who became proportionally more socially excluded and marginalised in this process of transition. Thus, the problem of social exclusion has been analysed in a large frame of north-south axis, young versus old immigrant countries, narrow or extensive welfare systems and in the frame of democratic transition.

The project has contributed to the dialogue and development of EU immigration and integration policies as well as discussion on forms of social exclusion and development of relevant policies in national level to combat the marginalisation of immigrant youth. It has also furthered the ongoing process of development of common principles or EU immigration policy as well as social agenda. This has all been accomplished through the extensive qualitative research done by offering the young immigrants and descendants a platform to voice their opinions and experiences and using this as a basis to further our knowledge on the subject matter and advance policy on a European level.

From the broad analysis of the impact of EUMARGINS research activities the specific impact can be divided into two areas: (1) the impact on national and transnational research on social exclusion and (2) the impact on policy community and general public. More specifically the project has had an impact in the following ways:

First, the EUMARGINS project has contributed to advancing the issue of the social exclusion of young immigrants. Social exclusion of immigrants is regarded as a key societal trend in Europe and an issue where new actions are needed. Worrying events throughout Europe; the UK riots this past summer, France and UK in 2005 and earlier in the Netherlands give signal to European societies about the problems of social exclusion and marginalisation of immigrant youth. Most of the research studying social exclusion has applied quantitative methods of sociological survey. This research presents the complex interplay of different variables of social and ethnic background that play a critical role in social exclusion. However, the causality of different variables is hard to establish with great precision through large sample quantitative methods. Therefore current project will approach the question of social exclusion of immigrant youth with qualitative technique. Biographical and ethnographical research methods and life-course analysis has provided new insight into causal process of variables influencing the process of social exclusion. This new empirical data has been a valuable addition to the existing knowledge on processes and outcomes, especially on causality of social exclusion.

Additionally, the project has simultaneously carried out new empirical research in each country as well as integrate ongoing or already available quantitative research. Through the cross-national comparison, this project has made an important contribution to the international research field of social exclusion of young immigrants. Cross-national comparison is a valuable information source for European Commission and national policy makers in the policy development process since it also allows for understanding of best practices across countries thereby creating an opportunity for knowledge exchange.

Second, the EUMARGINS project has enhanced cooperation between researchers in Europe in research area of youth and social exclusion. The cooperation of researchers from different EU states and associated countries have enhanced research network activity and enforced the sensibility to the specific EU dimension of immigration issues. Transnational cooperation has brought different approaches and insights from different research teams into the project and enhanced the context and scope of the research in social exclusion area. By providing a network for the students and researchers from different countries participating in the project, we have developed a transnational European research expertise in the subject area. National research teams have long experienced in working on social exclusion of immigrant groups in their own countries, however, through transnational cooperation they have been able to reflect on their approaches and methods of the research. Additionally, the policy development activity has developed new knowledge and new experience for some partners who have not been involved in such activity before.

Third, EUMARGINS project has engaged relevant communities such as NGOs dealing with marginalised groups or immigrant groups, also immigrant communities themselves as well as stakeholders and practitioners throughout the research process. These communities have been involved as contact organisations for approaching sample informants as well as grounds for developing discussion and receiving feedback in research results and methods. EUMARGINS partners have long experience in working together with immigrant stakeholder communities in carrying out their research and this experience has been expanded upon under the current project.

Fourth, the EUMARGINS project have provided information and guidance to policy makers in order to better solve the social problem of exclusion of young immigrants in diverse European states. An important objective of the project is to develop policy recommendations based on the findings of research carried out under the project. Additionally, policy recommendations have included best practice examples of social inclusion and cohesion methods employed in different EU countries. Policy recommendations have been discussed with relevant stakeholders in each country involved in the policy workshops and published on project website as well as through media in each country.

Dissemination of results to the general public have also been similarly important in order to achieve full impact on policy and in order to disseminate project results. The comparison of the similarities and differences on social exclusion of immigrant youth and relevant integration policies in different EU and associated countries have contributed to the possibility of transnational learning on behalf of policy holders. Through learning about specific training programmes or extra curricula activities developed in different countries and which of these contribute to diminishing social exclusion while others do not, policy makers can develop more informed policies.

Fifth, through wide dissemination of project results to general public, the project has had an impact on overall awareness of social exclusion of immigrant youth among general public in participating countries and in the EU in general. The awareness of general public on social exclusion issue is important from two aspects: (1) the support for policies targeting social exclusion problem will be stronger if the public is more aware and (2) the awareness will contribute to the change of overall attitude towards socially excluded people towards more positive sentiment. Marginalisation of young people with immigrant background often carries a negative attitude among the general population. There is also sometimes little awareness about different aspects connected to this process. Thus, this project aims at addressing not only research community but also the general public on the topic of social exclusion and marginalisation of youth with immigrant background.

1.4.1 Main dissemination activities and exploitation of results

EUMARGINS project has delivered results in the field of research on social exclusion of youth with immigrant background in seven different European countries as well as specific national and EU-level policy recommendations based on this research.

The dissemination of research results started from the very beginning of the project though the establishment of the web pages of the project. This has enabled dissemination of timely information about the activities, news events, media interviews as well as results of project to different audiences. It has also allowed regular access to all partners without the need of establishment of central coordination of information dissemination. The web pages include the following information:

(1) Information about the project, its objectives and activities carried out and list of partners

(2) Regularly updated section on information about research on social exclusion carried out by the consortium as well as by partners separately

(3) Meeting materials and other information discussed between partners (on the internal pages)

(4) All public deliverables of the project

(5) All scientific knowledge produced during the project

(6) Policy recommendations section for politicians, stakeholders and media

The web pages provides a platform for uploading information regularly by all partners and in the language considered most relevant by the partner, although the majority of the material has been published in English.

New scientific knowledge produced by the EUMARGINS project has been published online on the project web pages, as well as in project publications, such as the two EUMARGINS books and scientific articles in national and international journals. The cross-national comparison of the research results based on the qualitative material was collected and published in the second book of the EUMARGINS project. As mentioned in Section. 1.3 the second book includes chapters written by each participating country produced by each of the national research teams. During the project several publications of scientific articles were published in national and international journals. The articles were based on the national case studies and some provided a comparative analysis of two or more case studies.

The final scientific conference for the EUMARGINS took place on 14 September 2011 from 0900-1600 hrs and the aims of the conference were the following:

* to present the results of the research carried out in EUMARGINS project

* to present and discuss the transnational comparison of process of social exclusion of immigrant youth in seven European countries

* to discuss the national findings and cross-national comparison with scientific community in Europe and worldwide.

The Coordinator organised the logistics of the conference, though each participant team provided a presentation on their chapter from the second EUMARGINS book. Three of the sessions included external discussants that provided feedback and interpretation on the chapters in preparation for the discussion. The Coordinator also arranged three of the young voices to participant in a panel discussion; the three represented the contexts of Estonia, Spain and Norway. The conference also included a policy session where the suggestions for policy and practice were offered to the audience. The concluding session presented a cross-national dialogue among three of the researchers of the project. The major target group of the conference were experienced scientists from other European countries as well as other nations, young researchers and political stakeholders. The number of participants reached 50 participants. The aim of the discussion was to provide young researchers with training on research methods employed during the project to study social exclusion as well as possibility to present their research work in that area.

The following is the program for the final EUMARGINS conference:

0900 Welcome

0930-1005 hrs: SESSION I


Presentation by Associate Professor Katrine Fangen, University of Oslo

(Scientific Coordinator)

1005-1050 hrs: SESSION II


Presentation by Professor Les Back, Goldsmiths College

(UK Research Team)

Discussant: Arnfinn Haagensen Midtbøen, Institute for Social Research

1050-1105 hrs: Coffee/Tea

1105-1140 hrs: SESSION III


Presentation by Associate Professor Judit Strömpl, University of Tartu

(Estonian Research Team)

1140-1225 hrs: SESSION IV


Presentation by Vincent Ferry, MA, A.R.O.F.E/University of Nancy

(French Research Team)

Discussant: Line Eldring, Fafo Research Foundation

1225-1340 hrs: Lunch

1340-1425 hrs: SESSION V


Presentation by Professor Carles Feixa, University of Lleida

(Spanish Research Team)

Discussant: Sindre Bangstad, University of Oslo

1425-1445 hrs: SESSION VI


Presentation by Kristina Kallas, MA, Institute of Baltic Studies

(Estonian Research Team)

1445-1500 hrs: Coffee/Tea

1500-1530 hrs: "YOUNG VOICES:" Presentation by a selection of informants


Dialogue between Associate Professor Katrine Fangen (N), Professor Les Back (UK) and Professor Thomas Johansson, University of Gothenburg (Sweden)

Throughout the project the project participants have disseminated research results by participating in other European research conferences, providing presentations at relevant institutions and participating in media interviews.

For the dissemination of policy recommendations policy workshops have been organised in each participating country (excluded the Swedish context). There were six policy workshops at the final stage of the project. Based on the results of the research, the project participants developed policy recommendations for either improving existing policy mechanisms or developing new ones. Policy recommendations were first developed separately for each country and then compiled into one report for the European level. The policy analysis centre Institute of Baltic Studies was be responsible for coordination of activities in collaboration with the Coordinator (University of Oslo).

Policy workshops were aimed at presenting the results of the research carried out in each country and transnationally and presenting policy recommendations, as well as discussing the results and recommendations with politicians and stakeholders of each country. The target group of policy workshops were local/national politicians and stakeholders (community leaders, NGO representatives) and each workshop concluded with an open and frank discussion.

List of Websites:
EUMARGINS' Coordinator

Associate Professor Katrine Fangen

Department of Sociology and Human Geography

P.O. Box 1096 Blindern, N-0317 Oslo, Norway

EUMARGINS' Partner Details

PARTNER 2: Centre for Cultural Studies, University of Gothenburg

Name: Thomas Johansson

Address: Box 200, 405 30 Gothenburg, Sweden

Phone/Email: Tel +46317865869,

PARTNER 3: Goldsmiths College, Department of Sociology

Name: Professor Les back

Address: Floors 8-11 Warmington Tower, New Cross, London SE14 6NW, UK

Phone/Email: Tel +442079197380,

PARTNER 4: Dipartimento di Scienze Antropologiche (DiSA)

Name : Roberto Alzetta

Address: DiSA, Corso Podesta, 16128 Genoa, Italy

Phone/Email: Tel +3901020953738,


Name: Professor Oriol Romani

Address: Carrer Enrique Granados 116, 1-2, 08008 Barcelona, Spain

Phone/Email: Tel +34934152599,

PARTNER 6: Association de Recherche observation formation et Enseignement Metz (AROFE)

Name : Vincent Ferry

Address : 10 Rue de la Sajotte, 88170 Arofe, France

Phone/Email : Tel 0329064187,

PARTNER 7: Institute of Baltic Studies (IBS)

Name: Kristina Kallas

Address: Lai 30, Tartu 51005 Estonia

Phone/Email: Tel +3725118311,