International Conference “Youth, Migrations and Development around the Mediterranean”

From May 4th to May 6th 2016 was held the International conference «Youth, Migrations and Development around the Mediterranean » organised by the Ecole française de Rome and the Sapienza University in Rome. Our team has been invited to discuss the study « Children of refugees in Europe » in the refugees’ session with Kirk Scott (Lund University, Sweden) as Chair person and Manlio Cinalli (CEVIPOF, Sciences Po Paris – Ecole française de Rome) as discussant. It was a great occasion for the team to present some results. Each country team has introduced some national results focusing on one particular aspect of the children of refugees’ lives:

  • The UK team has discussed educational trajectories of children refugees in London with the presentation  « Education and the reproduction of inequalities among the adult children of refugees » (Alice Bloch and Shirin Hirsh, University of Manchester).
  • The Swiss team has focused on transnational linkages with a presentation discussing « Feelings of belongings and social networks of the adult children of refugees in Switzerland » (Milena Chimienti, Anne-Laure Counilh and Laurence Ossipow, University of Applied Sciences Western Switzerland, Geneva).
  • To conclude the session, the French team has introduced some thoughts about transnational political involvement with a presentation entitled Transnational political engagement among the Kurdish-Turk Refugees in France (Giovanna Tattolo and Catherine Wihtol de Wenden, Sciences Po Paris).

Youth, Migrations and Development around the Mediterranean - Conference picture

Program of the conference available here.


12th IMISCOE annual conference

From June 25th to June 27th was held the 12th IMISCOE annual conference in Geneva.

Our team took this opportunity to organise a panel on the theme “Children of refugees”.

With Catherine Wihtol de Wenden (Sciences Po Paris) as Chair person and Maurice Crul (Erasmus University Rotterdam and Free University of Amsterdam) as discussant, each team presented some insight from the fieldwork :

  • The Swiss children of refugees : Transnational but not cosmopolitan ? ( Milena Chimienti, Anne-Laure Counilh and Laurence Ossipow, University of Applied Sciences Western Switzerland, Geneva)
  • School inclusion and exclusion:  Experiences of second generation from refugee backgrounds in London (Alice Bloch and Shirin Hirsh, University of Manchester)
  • Political Engagement among the Kurdish-Turk Refugees in France (Giovanna Tattolo and Catherine Wihtol de Wenden, Sciences Po Paris)


More details in IMISCOE Conference Program

Second Team Meeting in Paris

On the 16th of Januray 2015, the second meeting of the Project « Children of Refugees » has been held in Paris.

Milena Chimienti, Laurence Ossipow-Wüest and Anne-Laure Counilh from Geneva and Alice Bloch and Shirin Hirsch were welcomed in Paris by Catherine Withol de Wenden and Giovanna Tattolo.


The meeting has been precedeed by a visit of the Turkish historical neighborhood of Faubourg St-Denis and by a guided tour of the Indian and Tamil neighborhood of La Chappelle, commented by Delon Madavan, PhD in Geography from Paris-Sorbonne.


Preliminary thoughts from the field work were presented and discussed during the meeting. The team discussed first interpretations and leads for analyses and agreed on further direction for the field work and publication plan.

Next meeting will be held in Geneva in June during the IMISCOE Annual Conference.

First team meeting in Geneva

On the 27th of June 2014, the first meeting of the project “Children of Refugees” has been held in Geneva at the University for Applied Sciences and Arts of Western Switzerland with the Swiss, French and English teams.

Milena Chimienti and Laurence Ossipow-Wüest, team coordinator from Geneva, with the help of Anne-Laure Counilh and Florence Moos, have welcomed, Catherine Withol de Wenden and Giovanna Tattolo from Sciences Po Paris and Alice Bloch from the University of Manchester.

During a day of hard work, members of the team have discussed the state of research on second generation in each country, research methods, specific contexts and goals for the project.

The team agrees to start the field work in Fall 2014 in the three countries with a common qualitative topic guide for interviews.

Next meeting will be held in Paris in January.

Children of Refugees in Europe

Addressing an important gap in the literature, this research project aims to explore the lives of the European born adult children of refugees. The research will explore the following questions: What have been and are the educational and employment experiences of this group? How do they compare with their parents and with other ethnic minorities in the country of residence? What are their transnational linkages? How do they express ideas of belonging and aspirations for the future? How do they reflect on their refugee backgrounds as shaping their lives? How does the city and national contexts influence children of refugees participation and access to education, employment, belonging and inter-cultural relations? Research will be carried out in three countries – Switzerland, France and the United Kingdom – to contextualize experiences within the wider policy and political arenas. Mixed methods drawn from different social science disciplines will be used to collect qualitative data from 135 interviewees though in-depth interviews with the European born adult children of refugees from Vietnam, Sri Lanka and Turkey. Including the same country of origin groups in each research site will enable more robust comparisons of the national and local contexts and the policy environments.