19.10.2023, 14:00 - 15:30

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Online event via Zoom


Convener: Heidrun Bohnet, Department for Migration and Globalisation

The interdisciplinary online discussion series on migration research of the Department for Migration and Globalization at the University of Continuing Education Krems offers scholars a platform to discuss current work in the field of migration research. Between October 2023 and June 2024, scholars from different academic disciplines will present their research projects in the field of migration and flight. Be there and engage in the discussion.

Next Event

Thursday, 19 October 2023, 14:00-15:00 pm  

‘Promising victimhood’: Contrasting deservingness requirements in refugee resettlement (online)

Natalie Welfens (Centre for East European and International Studies):


In today’s migration and refugee governance, refugees are increasingly required to demonstrate both vulnerability and assimilability to be considered deserving of protection and territorial access. This article advances the notion of ‘promising victimhood’ [Chauvin, Sébastien, and Blanca Garcés-Mascareñas. 2018. The Myth of Humanitarianism: Migrant Deservingness, Promising Victimhood, and Neoliberal Reason. Barcelona] as a fruitful concept to capture the contrasting demands refugees face: policies and practices that require refugees to demonstrate that they are currently vulnerable and at risk, yet willing and able to ‘overcome’ their vulnerability to become law-abiding, self-sufficient and culturally malleable members of their host societies in the future.

Taking the example of selection practices in refugee resettlement to Europe, I show how ‘promising victimhood’ is characterised by tensions between vulnerability and three dimensions of assimilability: (1) security, (2) economic performance, and (3) cultural ‘fit’. Welfens' talk will highlight how social markers of inter alia nationhood/race/religion, gender, sexuality and age shape assessments of both vulnerability and assimilability and thereby, which groups get to be seen as more deserving of access than others. By further developing promising victimhood as a concept, the article advances a more comprehensive understanding of deservingness and of the complex – gendered, racialised and age-differentiated – boundaries of inclusion and exclusion refugees face in today’s protection regime.

To register for the online event, please click here.

Overview of upcoming events

Tuesday, 14 November 2022, 11:00-12:00 pm (hybrid)

Christa Wichterich (Sociologist)

"Care in Global Calue Chains"

Thursday, 14 December 2023, 14:00-15:00am

Ahlam Chemlali (PhD Candidate, Danish Institute for International Studies)

"European border externalisation in North Africa: Exploring the gendered and local effects"

Thursday, 25 January 2024, 14:00-15:00am

Maia Janmyr (Professor in International Migration Law at the Faculty of Law, University of Oslo)

"The 1951 Refugee Convention and Non-Signatory States: Charting a Research Agenda"

Thursday, 29 February 2024, 14:00-15:00 am

Philippe M. Frowd  (Associate Professor, University Ottawa, Canada)

More info coming soon


Department for Migration and Globalisation at University for Continuing Education Krems

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