Friedrich Heckmann (2007)
Empirical Research on Migrant Integration: Trends 1995-2004
In: Zeitschrift für Bevölkerungswissenschaft, Vol. 32, 3-4/2007, p. 505-532, Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften, ISSN: 0340-2398
The article aims at exploring major trends in international empirical research regarding the integration of migrants in European societies that have experienced immigration. The mapping of such trends allows for the identification of gaps in research. The mapping was done through an analysis of articles in major international journals specializing in migration and integration research for the period of 1995-2004. A system of categories had to be developed on the basis of concepts of integration research which relate to the social integration of migrants into the existing systems of the receiving society, the consequences of social integration for the social structures of the receiving society and the consequences of social integration for the system integration of the immigration society. The results show among others that the areas of research on changes of the social structure under the impact of immigration and research on consequences for societal cohesion are clearly underresearched. The large majority of studies is on structural integration, particularly into the economic institutions of labour market and entrepreneurship. Taking a policy perspective a huge research gap exists in relation to policies and measures of integration and their effects. Finally, a severe lack of cross cultural studies was found.