Topic: Migration and spatial inequality: the case of the Netherlands
Keywords: quality of life, spatial inequality, e/im-migration, (im)mobility, Romania, Netherlands
We will present preliminary results from the on-going H2020 IMAJINE project. The project aims to understand territorial inequalities and spatial (in)justice through the lens of migration. It responds to questions related to the way perceptions about quality of life influence the decision to migrate, and how migration in turn affects the quality of life in receiving and sending areas.
Specifically, we look at:
- how migration affects the perceived and experienced wellbeing, liveability and quality of life of long-term residents in both migration sending and receiving areas. The study focuses in particular on how residents perceive or experience the material and social effects of migration on the place, be it the village, city, region or even country. One of the premises of this study is the assumption that objective effects of e/im-migration (e.g. economic) to or out of an area might not always match the subjective experiences of the persons living there.
- the role of expectations and information on migrants’ decision to migrate and on their experienced and perceived quality of life at destination. Individuals start with positive expectations about what they can achieve through the migration process, which shapes their decision of whether and where to migrate, however, they eventually have to face the reality at destination, which may or may not match their initial expectations. The difference between expectations and reality, mediated by prior knowledge, social networks, demographic and household characteristics as well as work and educational status before migration, shape the wellbeing, quality of life and liveability of migrants at destination.
The matching of sending and receiving regions, or immigrants and residents, will enable our deeper understanding of how migration reflects and affects spatial inequalities and quality of life.
The study is based on 15-20 in-depth interviews conducted with Romanian immigrants in the Netherlands, Dutch residents in the Netherlands and Romanian residents in Romania (a total of 45-60).