13-14 May 2024: Symposium by TraFaDy and MITRA on “Linking policy and academia: Transnational Families in Europe”

In a joint meeting of TraFaDy and IMISCOE MITRA around 25 scholars, researchers, practitioners, and policymakers working in fields related to migration, family, policy, and related disciplines came together for an intense exchange on the intersection of migration policies and transnational family dynamics in Europe. Jointly they explored avenues for research-policy dialogue and collaborative action to ensure the rights and well-being of migrant families are upheld in policy-making processes.

On the first day of the two days event different papers were presented and discussed. Participants from research reflected on their own cooperation and communication with non-academics and identified challenges they face. The effects of transnational family life and policy implications were discussed on the examples of four presentations by Viorela Telegdi Csetri (CASTLE) with findings from Eastern Europe, including Romania and Ukraine; Victor Cebotari (University of Luxembourg) with findings from Moldova, Georgia and beyond; Karlijn Haagsman (Maastricht University) with findings from the TCRA, TCRAf-Eu and MO-TRAYL Project (Angola, Ghana, Nigeria, Ireland, Portugal, and The Netherlands) and Brigitte Suter (Mälmo University) with findings from the Transnational Families in Europe Project (UK, France, Spain and Sweden). The afternoon concentrated on the new EU Pact on Migration and Asylum as being the latest example of an European policy development showing an increasing trend towards stricter regulations and limitations on migration, including family reunification. Andreas de Boer presented some findings of the TraFaDy meeting on this topic that had been organised in Berlin in October 2023 that will be laid down in TraFaDy’s first policy brief to be published 2024.

The second day of the symposium was dedicated to a special training for early career researchers such as PhDs and postdocs on how to relate academic research to policy. They were given the opportunity to present their work and to have some reflections from the plenary, not only on the research itself, but also on the relevance and need in terms of communication when presenting to non-academics.

A detailed report of the symposium by Brigitte Suter and Karlijn Haagsman can be found on the Migrant Transnationalism Blog.

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