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Recent publications on citizenship laws and policies


Four Patterns of Non-resident Voting Rights


By Szabolcs Pogonyi, Ethnopolitics, November 2013. 

Although the number of external voters has increased significantly in the past decades, the normative and political dilemmas of absentee voting still receive little scholarly attention. The few theoretical attempts that try to analyze systematically non-resident political rights from a normative perspective focus exclusively on dilemmas presented by expatriate citizens. The aim of this article is to contextualize the normative dilemmas and practical problems related to non-resident voting, with a special emphasis on the dilemmas related to the enfranchisement of ethnic kin populations created by shifting borders. The article identifies four patterns of external enfranchisement and offers an analysis of the reasons behind the political inclusion of the different types of external population. The main argument of the article is to highlight the different reasons behind the enfranchisement of temporary absentees (including refugees), economic migrants, exiles of past undemocratic regimes and kin-minorities. While in the case of expatriates, the existence of effective ties between migrants and homelands is used as the normative basis for the maintenance of extraterritorial political rights, ethnic kin-minorities are enfranchised as part of ethnic engineering projects.

Do Citizenship Regimes Shape Political Incorporation? Evidence from Four European Cities

By Amparo González-Ferrera and Laura Morales, European Political Science (2013), 12.

We examine how different formal citizenship regimes fare in achieving the political inclusion of immigrants and their children by looking at voting turnout in local elections. We analyse survey data from four European cities that grant voting rights to foreigners but are located in countries with contrasting rules for access to formal citizenship. Local voting gaps are larger where citizenship rules are more restrictive, which suggests that citizenship regimes have long-lasting effects on political inclusion.

Policy framing and denizen enfranchisement in Portugal: why some migrant voters are more equal than others

By Luicy Pedroza, Citizenship Studies, Issue 6-7, 2013. 

The enfranchisement of non-citizens across different democracies has been mostly approached at with macro-explanations that propose national traditions of citizenship or transnational influences as remote causes, leading researchers to explain variation through some fuzzy balancing of the two. This article joins the more recent literature focusing on the meso-level, particularly on political discourses on denizen enfranchisement, to examine the deviating case of Portugal, based both on strict reciprocity and on differentiating clauses that divide non-citizen migrants into different universes of voters and non-voters. Such a case allows theoretical refinement of process-based and discursive approaches on denizen enfranchisement and shows that it succeeded in Portugal when parliamentarians framed it as a symbolically generous but practically restricted move that promised prestige gains vis-à-vis Europe and Portuguese emigrants.

Governing diversity: Dutch political parties' preferences on the role of the state in civic integration policies

By Saskia Bonjour, Citizenship Studies, Vol. 17 Issue 6-7, 2013

This article analyses political debates about civic integration policies in the Netherlands, so as to identify different conceptions of the role of the state in ensuring social cohesion by governing diversity. Drawing on the literature on party systems, it presents an analysis of political party positions on the role of the state in civic integration along two dimensions: economic distribution on the one hand, and sociocultural governance on the other hand. I find that while the large majority of Dutch political parties adopt authoritarian positions on the sociocultural axis in favour of state intervention to protect Dutch culture and identity, their positions diverge significantly on the classic economic Left–Right dimension. The most contentious issue in Dutch civic integration politics is whether the state, the market or individual migrants should be responsible for financing and organising courses. Thus, this article proposes an innovative model for analysing the politics of citizenship, which enables us to comprehend how citizenship policies are shaped not only by views on how identity and culture relate to social cohesion, but also by diverging perspectives on socio-economic justice.

Emigration Nations: Policies and Ideologies of Emigrant Engagement

Edited by Mike Collyer, Palgrave MacMillan, 2013. 

Until very recently emigrants were considered an embarrassment, an irritation or an irrelevance by most states. The long experience of emigrant engagement in certain historical emigration countries, such as Italy, was very much the exception. Since about 2000, countries around the world have shown much greater enthusiasm for policies to encourage the loyalty of nationals who have made a permanent home elsewhere. These developments have changed the relationship between state institutions and emigrant nationals. Policies of emigrant engagement also challenge fundamental understandings about the nature of political society in the modern era; the notion of states as territorial institutions or the understanding of citizenship as membership in a territorially bounded polity are both undermined. This book provides copious evidence of this process, with detailed, comparable case studies of twelve countries and a new theoretical framework that helps explain changing policies towards emigrants.