Contemporary Labour Migration, May 12-13, 2010

Contemporary Labour Migration: National and International Perspectives


Hosted by NUI Galway under the auspices of the Population Geography Research Group of the RGS-IBG and Population Commission of the
International Geographical Union

Papers are invited for an Anglo-Irish population conference on Labour Migration. Whilst there is a focus on Ireland and the UK, papers that address the broad conference themes in other geographical contexts will be most welcome. 

Major changes have taken place in the scale and character of labour migration in the UK and Ireland since the early 1990s, involving both national and international workers. Established patterns of movement have continued within and between rural and urban regions; both countries also experienced dramatic increases in overseas labour immigration from the early 1990s on, to fill vacancies in highly skilled and lower skilled employment. Both countries, with Sweden, opened their borders immediately in 2004 to members of the new accession states of the European Union to meet labour deficits. In response to reduced rates of economic growth since 2008, demand for labour has fallen and new challenges have emerged for labour, employers and governments. New migration patterns are apparent, associated with migrant return to countries of origin and relocation within and between regions. Ireland and the UK provide similarities but also contrasts in terms of labour migration, in particular the diversity of the formerís immigrant flows. Both countries are currently facing crises in their labour markets which are finding expression in changing migration patterns, a phenomenon that is not exclusive to them. This experience provides a context for exploring and developing existing and new theoretical perspectives relating to internal and international migration.

Papers are invited on the following themes in particular:

(i) the socio-economic and political contexts of recent labour migration, including the role of employers, national governments and international agencies in the migration process;
(ii) the composition of migration flows at an international scale and impacts in source and reception areas;
(iii) the internal and transnational labour migration experience within urban and rural settings;
(iv) the transnational labour migrant experience in the broader host society.

Abstracts (max. 300 words) are invited by Tuesday 6th April 2010, click here

Guest Speaker: Professor Adrian J. Bailey, University of Leeds and Hong Kong Baptist University will deliver a plenary address on Recession, Labour Migration, and Europe's Transnational Turn, at 18:30 on 12th May, in the D'Arcy Thompson Theatre.

Graduate Bursaries: A limited number of graduate bursaries are available on a competitive basis to cover the cost of the registration fee, (sponsored by the Dean of Arts, Social Sciences & Celtic Studies), click here.  

Registration commences at 10:30 on Wednesday 12th May followed by buffet lunch at 12:00.  The Conference opens at 13:00 on the 12th May and closes at 17:00 on Thursday 13th of May.

Darren Smith, Chair, RGS-IBG Population Geography Research Group
Mary Cawley:
Marie Mahon:
Valerie Ledwith: 
School of Geography and Archaeology, National University of Ireland, Galway