Global Development Institute Blog

luisOn Monday 5th December the University Of Manchester hosted it’s first Manchester Migration Lab workshop to identify and discuss the range and depth of work on migration being carried out by colleagues across a range of schools and institutes.

Following an in-depth scanning of current university research on migration 50 members of the staff and 20 PhD students were identified and invited to this session with convenors

At the first ever workshop, four key concepts and ideas were selected for discussion:

  • Borders
  • Journeys
  • Agency
  • Home

If you couldn’t make the session and would like to hear recordings of the panels, please click below:


Politics of inclusion, exclusion, integration, language and identity


  • Bridget Byrne – Senior Lecturer in Sociology on ‘Borders and the citizen’,
  • Thomas Tyerman – PhD Student (awaiting viva in December) – Politics, School of Social Science on ‘Seeing borders as everyday segregation in the UK and Calais’,
  • Huw Vasey – Research Associate – School of Arts, Languages & Cultures on ‘Strategies and tactics in the making of migration landscapes: using de Certeau to think about interactions between borders and agency’.



Human mobility and patterns of migration, aspirations, places of transit and arrival

  • Panel:
    Elisa Pieri, Simon Research Fellow, Sociology, School of Social Sciences on ‘The journey: Western narratives of pandemic outbreak’
  • Yaron Matras, Professor of Linguistics, SALC on ‘Language Journeys’
  • Tanja R. Müller, Senior Lecturer in Development Studies, Global Development Institute on ‘Journey – aspiration and/or despair’.



Resilience, coping strategies, structure and agency

  • Panel:
    William W. Thomson – Humanitarian & Conflict Response Institute, School: School of Arts, Languages and Cultures on  ‘Conflict Camps: The Lessons of Agency and Resilience in Post Conflict Peacebuilding’
  • Jonathan Darling, Senior Lecturer in Human Geography, School of Environment, Education and Development on ‘The politics of presence: agency and refugee resettlement’.
  • Cathy Wilcock – Migration Lab Coordinator and Researcher, GDI – HCRI on ‘Agency and identity: understanding the forms and contents of diaspora activism’.



Identity, belonging, migrants as insiders and outsiders, home-making practices

  • Panel:
    Michelle Obeid, Lecturer in Social Anthropology on ‘Home-Making in the Diaspora: Bringing Palestine to London’
  • Madeline-Sophie (Maddy) Abbas, School of Sociology on ‘Constructions of ‘safety’ and ‘sanctuary’ and the temporal limits of ‘home’ for Syrians recently resettled in the UK’
  • Luis Eduardo Perez Murcia, Migration Lab Research Assistant (GDI and HCRI) on  ‘Searching for a place called home: conflict and displacement in Colombia’ .

Find out more about Manchester Migration Lab