Mittwoch, 11. Dezember 2019: Vortrag zu Digital Migration Studies in Duisburg

Das Institut für Soziologie lädt in Kooperation mit dem InZentIM herzlich zum morgigen Vortrag im Soziologischen Kolloquium ein:


Digital migration studies: working through paradoxes of space, time, scale and perspective

Koen Leurs (Universität Utrecht)

 11. Dezember 2019, 14:15 – 16:00 h

Campus Duisburg, LF 156


Der Vortrag findet in englischer Sprache statt. /// The lecture will be held in English. 

Migration and digitization are fundamental drivers of cultural, societal, political and economic transformation – however we need a better understanding of how these two processes are interrelated. In recent years, the scale, intensity and types of migration and digitization processes have grown significantly across the Globe. Therefore, Arjun Appadurai recently called on scholars “for renewed attention to the relationship between migrants and mediation” (2019, 1). My focus in this talk will be on how digital migration paradoxically simultaneously creates insiders and outsiders among, within and across people who are forcibly on the move. The so-called European Refugee Crisis (’15-16) has resulted a proliferation of research on digital migration, resulting in greater understandings, but also showing knowledge gaps and raising considerable theoretical, methodological and ethical challenges. Digital migration scholarship is for example generally produced within the confines of disciplinary silos, it is skewed towards Europe and the United States. Moreover, scholars commonly take top-down perspectives, focussing on the roles of institutions and organizations. Little attention is paid to the bottom-up: how do forced migrants draw on digital media to make do or contest living in challenging migration infrastructures? In addition, studies commonly single out specific actors and contexts in their studies, the interrelations between and across stakeholders present another gap in the scholarship. I will explore further in the lecture how I seek to provide an initial answer to these concerns in my current book project titled Digital Migration by: 1). highlighting the relationships between involved stakeholders to acknowledge how top-down forces and bottom-up experiences together shape digital migration; 2). drawing comparisons across space and time, by demonstrating how digitization co-shapes migration across geo-political locations, and how contemporary digital migration builds on historical lineages. 3). establishing the interdisciplinary common ground of digital migration across scholarly fields, and pointing out the points of divergence in academic specialization 4). acknowledging the pros and cons of both large-scale and small-scale methodological empirical approaches in digital migration, in light of community-centered research ethics.

Studierende und Kolleg*innen aller Fakultäten sind herzlich eingeladen, die hochschulöffentlichen Vorträge mit anschließender Diskussion zu besuchen.

Students and Colleagues of all faculties are warmly invited to attend the the lectures and to participate in the following discussion.

Koen Leurs is Assistant Professor in Gender and Postcolonial Studies at the Graduate Gender Program, Department of Media and Culture, Utrecht University, the Netherlands. He is the chair of the European Communication Research and Education (ECREA), Diaspora, Migration and the Media section. He was the principal investigator of the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research-funded study Young connected migrants. Comparing digital practices of young asylum seekers andexpatriates in the Netherlands and the Dutch National Research Agenda-funded participatory action research project Media literacy through making media: A key to participation for young migrants? In 2018 he co-guest-edited special issues on ‘Forced migration and digital connectivity’ with Kevin Smets for Social Media + Society and on ‘Connected migrants’ with Sandra Ponzanesi for Popular Communication. Later in 2019, the Sage Handbook of Media and Migration will come out, which he co-edited with Kevin Smets, Myria Georgiou, Saskia Witteborn and Radhika Gajjala. Currently, he is writing a monograph titled Digital migration.