Understanding Integration: the case of female migrants Paper presented at the conference „Gender and Migration“ Rhodos, 11th July 2008 Maria Kontou Institute of Social Research at the J. W. Goethe-University, Frankfurt/Main
The project: Integration of Female Migrants in Labour Market and Society. Policy Assessment and Policy Recommendations (FeMiPol) A Specific targeted research project (STREP) in the 6th Framework Programme of the European Commission (2006-2008) The project partners: Dr. Maria Kontos, Institut für Sozialforschung an der J. W. Goethe Universität, Frankfurt am Main, Coordinator Prof. Floya Anthias, Oxford Brookes University Prof. Mirjana Morokvasic, University of Paris X Prof. Giovanna Campani, University of Florence Dr. Mojca Pajnik, Peace Institute, Institute for Contemporary Social and Political Studies, Ljubljana Prof. Krystyna Slany, Jagiellonian University, Krakow Ms. Maria Liapi, Centre for Research on Women´s Issues, Athens Dr. Nikos Trimikliniotis, Intercollege, Nikosia
The project The method of the project and the concept of integration How we operationalized the concept of integration on the case of the migrant women in domestic work and care
The national cases: North, South, Eastern Europe (new EU member countries) Sweden, UK, German, France Portugal, Spain, Italy, Greece, Cyprus Poland, Slovenia
The objectives of the project The FeMiPol project explores and analyses the impact of integration policies on the position of migrant women within EU countries in the last decade, and on this basis will formulate recommendations for appropriate policy that fosters their integration and produces greater social cohesion. A central assumption is that integration policies should attend to the agency of the persons involved. The analysis of integration processes therefore focuses not only on barriers for social integration and on their removal, but also on the migration and integration strategies and life plans of the female migrants.
The method of biographical policy evaluation Document analysis of policies and their objectives Interviews with policy makers and administrators on implementation of policies Biographical interviews with female migrants: Analysis of experiences and integration strategies Interaction analysis of encounters with social service officers based on narrative interviews
The concept of integration emerging in arenas of negotiation of different interests The critique on the concept of integration Integration in what? (the society) In which spheres? (the indicators) A norm addressing migrants (the responsibility of integration is on the migrants)
The concept of social integration in the FeMiPol project The level of citizenship rights The level of social recognition The concept of social integration has to be Agency-sensitive: integration embedded in the social action Biographical action aware: Ability for intentional action and realization of biographical plans Take into account the normativity of the concept: what kind of society we want? Migration in globalized societies: The multi contextuality of the integration processes in transantional migration Migration between policy and agency
Coexistence of social exclusion and social integration processes Social exclusion of migrant domestic workers lack of stable legal status restricted or no mobility chances deskilling, and family fragmentation (transnational motherhood) Social Integration in the margins processes of home making integration in ethnic communities, and local support from NGOs Claims for recognition and appropriate conditions for integration Coexistance of social exclusion and social integration processes
The meaning of the work place and the working conditions for integration processes: the case of the care for the elderly I Conflicts and risks in the work place: withdrawal of relatives from care, carrying sole responsibility for a task that should be conducted by a team Need for professionalization: care work for elderly requires more than gendered women´s skills, efforts of migrant women to achieve professional identity
The meaning of the work place and the working conditions for integration processes: the case of the care for the elderly II Professionalization requires a stable legal status: the need for stable legalization Professionalization requires the deconstruction of domestic work as unskilled work The need for re-evaluation of care work
The meaning of the work place and the working conditions for integration processes: the case of the care for children Conflicts in the work place: cultural differences about children`s upbringing that cannot be negotiated (power gap in communication) The need for professionalization: transcultural care work for children requires more than gendered women´s skills.
The meaning of the work place and the working conditions for integration processes: the case of the care for children Professionalization requires a stable legal status: The need for stable legalization The need for re-evaluation of care work
Integration means to be able to negotiate conflicts and problems in the work place
Strategies of domestic workers in dealing with conflicts in the work place: Professionalization strategies Exit strategies Changing employer Getting out of the live-in work arrangement Getting out of the domestic sector depends on the accessibility of other labour market sectors Entering other informal sectors of the labour market The trambolin effect
The web page of the project www.femipol.uni-frankfurt.de