Accepted Paper:

Imaginaries of migration and life strategies  


Katrin Sontag (University of Basel)

Paper short abstract:

This paper explores the role of migration in biographical narrations of highly skilled entrepreneurs from a perspective of individual life strategies and orientation schemes.

Paper long abstract:

Imaginaries of migration are mostly shaped by a statehood perspective, which refers to political status and borderlines of exclusion or inclusion. The proposed paper looks at imaginaries of movement (migration and mobility) from the perspective of life strategies and orientation schemes of individual actors, and asks for the role, which different migratory processes play within the events, decisions, conditions and consequences of their biographical narrations and meaning making. It draws from a study on highly qualified and highly mobile entrepreneurs.

This kind of "new migration/mobility" of the highly qualified with its connection to global and transnational social fields and processes tends to pose a challenge to classic concepts e.g. of departure and integration and has lead to numerous (scientific) imaginaries and concepts. The paper will discuss, which concepts may be valuable from a research perspective, which focusses on individual life strategies and orientation schemes.

Panel Mig003
Imaginaries of migration: identity and belonging