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Migration and the Rise of Populism


The migration crisis in 2015/16 has made obvious that both the EU and its member states will be confronted with growing immigration in the years to come. People are fleeing their home countries to escape from autocratic regimes, violent conflicts, the consequences of economic catastrophes among other reasons. As a crisis that will not vanish again, migration will have two opposed and intrinsically linked consequences in Western societies. On the one side it will lead to growing cultural heterogeneity and religious pluralisation; on the other side, as a reaction to these developments we observe the rise of populist movements all over Europe, trading on people’s economic and social insecurity in order to promote right-wing politics. The centre’s research will focus on the tension-ridden relationship between migration and populism by analysing its impact on the current definitions of citizenship.