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Recent publications on citizenship laws and policies


The Demographic Transformations of Citizenship

By Heli Askola, Cambridge University Press, 2016

The Demographic Transformations of Citizenship examines how attempts by contemporary states to govern demographic anxieties are shaping ideas about citizenship both as a boundary-maintaining mechanism and as an ideal of equal membership. These anxieties, while most often centred upon immigration, also stem from other demographic changes unfolding in contemporary states - most notably, the long-standing trend towards lower birth rates and consequent population ageing. With attention to such topics as control over borders, national identity, gender roles, family life and changing stages of life, Askola examines the impact of demographic changes, including but not limited to immigration. Drawing from a variety of disciplines, including law, demography, and sociology, this book discusses how efforts to manage demographic anxieties are profoundly altering ideas about citizenship and belonging.

See details at the publisher’s website.


Reproducing the nation: reproduction, citizenship and ethno-demographic survival in post-communist Romania

By Costica Dumbrava, JEMS, August 2016

The steady decline of fertility rates in Europe raises a number of important questions about the demographic and cultural reproduction of national societies. Apart from being confronted with population shrinkage and ageing, most European societies are also becoming more diverse. Demographic changes tend to exacerbate nationalist anxieties about the physical and cultural survival of the nation. This article develops the concept of national reproduction regime in order to analyse strategies and interventions at the biological, formal, and ethno-cultural levels of reproduction through which states seek to ensure the physical and cultural reproduction of the nation. It outlines the national reproduction regime of post-communist Romania by way of mapping and discussing key policies on biological and formal reproduction, as well as public discourses that frame these policies.

Read on the JEMS website.


Commercializing Citizenship in Crisis EU: The Case of Immigrant Investor Programmes

By Owen Parker, JCMS, August 2016

Immigrant investor programmes (IIPs) – aimed at attracting investment in return for residency or citizenship for wealthy foreigners – have proliferated in EU Member States in recent years. Such schemes constitute part of a much broader commercialization of citizenship, which has intensified during the crisis. They have been particularly controversial in the EU because they rely for their attractiveness in part on the reality of EU citizenship and the rights of mobility and residence that it entails. The European Commission, among others, has presented them as threat to national citizenship and yet the EU at once champions a ‘post-national’ citizenship and is arguably culpable in the very commercialization of citizenship of which investor schemes are a stark manifestation. This paper unpacks the tensions in the theory and politics of investor migration in the recent EU context, arguing that they reveal what is termed a ‘quadrilemma’ at the heart of a multi-level citizenship.

Access at the JCMS website.


Naturalization Trends in the United States

By Jie Zong and Jeanne Batalova, Migration Policy Institute, 2016

This article examines the latest U.S. naturalization data available, including historical trends and socioeconomic characteristics of naturalized citizens. Unless otherwise noted, data on the number and characteristics of foreign nationals who naturalized during FY 2014 are from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Immigration Statistics (OIS).

Read full text on the MPI website.


Incongruent migration categorisations and competing citizenship claims: ‘return’ and hypermigration in transnational migration circuits

By Elaine Lynn-Ee Ho, JEMS, July 2016

Recent scholarly interventions propose that the principle of jus nexi (effective connections) or jus domicile (domicile) should replace birthright or birthplace considerations when assigning citizenship status and political membership. Nonetheless, both views privilege notions of territorial presence and the ideal of political community. This paper focuses on Mainland Chinese return migration from Canada to metropolitan cities in China. The dual citizenship restriction enforced by China means those that naturalised in Canada have relinquished their right to Chinese citizenship. Should they be considered returnees, immigrants or transnational sojourners in their ancestral homeland? It is this incongruence in migration categorisations compared to migrant life-worlds that this paper aims to examine. The paper also highlights the interface of competing claims to citizenship in the context of Chinese internal migration and new (African) immigration in China, as well as the returnees’ own transnational migration across the lifecourse. It argues that the ordering mechanisms that characterise normative conceptions of citizenship focus on isolated types of migration trends whereas what confronts us more urgently are intersecting migration configurations that underline the incongruence of migration categorisations and the complexity of competing citizenship claims spatially and temporally.

Read at JEMS website.