Lecture Series: Critical Reflections on Afro-European Relations in Migration Governance


8 September - 17 November, 2021, via Zoom

Migration on the African continent is multifold, complex with varying effects. One angle in particular is the European efforts to control migration, which has reached far beyond its external borders to the African continent. For example, there has been an attempt to increase ‘cooperative agreements’ between the European Union (EU) with African states. This online lecture series critically discusses Afro-European relations that arise from EU-migration governance and the African responses in the multiple entanglements of border control, development and security. The lecture series is organized in three parts:

Part I “Securitisation” highlights that under the misnomer of fighting the root causes of forced migration there is a political agenda to reduce irregular migration from Africa to Europe. As a result, migration and border control has become increasingly interlinked with development and security policies.
Part II “Perceptions on Migration” offers critical and postcolonial perspectives on the often misleading political discourses, public perceptions and media representations of African migration to Europe.
Part III “Flipping the Script” offers up-to-date research which decentralizes the European perspectives: By looking at different regional set-ups (e.g. South-South and North-South migration) it offers alternative readings and opens up the discussion about the way forward in migration research.

By bringing together both English- and French-speaking scholars (facilitated by simultaneous translations) and involving junior and senior researchers based both in African and European institutes, the lecture series aims at a true exchange between the different academic discourse-communities that rarely get a chance to interact. Each thematic section consists of a keynote lecture, a research lab and a roundtable discussion. While the keynote lectures introduce the state of research, the research labs allow mostly early career academics to discuss their recent work in progress. The public roundtables are aimed at a broader interested public and involve civil society and activists from the field.

The lecture series is jointly organized by the Merian Institute for Advanced Studies in Africa (MIASA), the Arnold Bergstraesser Institute at the University of Freiburg (ABI), the Centre for Global Migration Studies at the University of Göttingen (CeMig), the Centre for Migration Studies at the University of Ghana and the Nordic Africa Institute, Uppsala (NAI). It is hosted in cooperation with the research network on African Migration, Mobility and Displacement (AMMODI) and alumni of MIASA’s Interdisciplinary Fellow Group (IFG) 1 on “Migration, Mobility and Forced Displacement” (2019).
It is funded by MIASA, the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research, the ABI, the CeMig and the Internationalisation Funds of the Faculty of Humanities of the University of Göttingen.