The Institute for research on Migration, Ethnicity and Society (REMESO) arranges several conferences and workshops yearly. Here we have gathered some of the more important events.

International workshop 2023

Doors closing!

Social Polarization and the Rise of Cultures of Rejection across Europe

Panel discussion, 2019

A panel discussion on the ways we live, work, fear, hate and dream in contemporary Europe – with some of the foremost thinkers in the area of right-wing politics, populism, nationalism and racism.

Keynote speakers

  • Manuela Bojadzijev, Humboldt University/Leuphania University, Germany.
  • Sanja M. Bojanic, University of Rijeka, Croatia.
  • Éric Fassin, University of Paris 8–Saint-Denis, France.
  • Michael Keith, University of Oxford, Great Britain.
  • Gazela Pudar Drasko, University of Belgrade, Serbia.
  • Birgit Sauer, University of Vienna, Austria.
  • Moderator: Stefan Jonsson, professor at the Institute for research on migration, ethnicity and society (REMESO) at Linköping University.

Doors closing!

Video from the panel discussion.

Migration and Race in the Era of Authoritarianism

New (Im)mobilities: Migration and Race in the Era of Authoritarianism 

19th Nordic Migration Research Conference, 2018 

Migration researchers usually devote themselves to the study of human mobility across political and cultural borders. Today, however, they are increasingly compelled to reconsider the question of stasis, or immobility. Just as it is true that greater numbers of people than ever may be described as migrants and/or as displaced persons, it is equally true that an ever greater part of these migrants find themselves in situations of prohibited movement, be it in the form of detention camps, border controls, EU hot spots, eroding asylum rights, territorial bondage, or racialized privileges and barriers that block mobility.

Territorial bounds and sedentary life forms always constituted the unspoken norm in research on international migration and ethnic relations. Today’s multiplication of instruments and policies that prevent people from moving should prompt migration research to rethink the discipline’s theoretical and methodological frameworks and invent new ways of understanding why the ‘age of migration’ also appears to be an era of emerging authoritarianism and immobility.

Keynote speakers

  • Etienne Balibar, Professor of philosophy, Columbia University, New York.
  • Thomas Hylland Eriksen, Professor, Department of Anthropology, Oslo.
  • Tanya Maria Golash-Boza, Professor, Sociology, University of California, Merced


With funding from the Swedish Research Council; Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare and Linköping University.

New Urban Justice Movements

A workshop on global and local experiences in the United States and in Sweden

City Museum, Stockholm, 2014

The workshop brought together researchers, civil society activists from Sweden and the United States, representatives of Swedish independent think-tanks and public institutions in a dialogue on the role of civil society relating to urban development, migration, democracy, labour rights and human rights.

Presentations by Monami Maulik, DRUM and Rafael Samanez, Vamos Unidos, New York, RamiAl-Khamisi, Megafonen, Stockholm and Majsa Allelin, Pantrarna, Gothenburg.
Moderator: Aleksandra Ålund, REMESO, Linköping University.

Panel participants: Karen Austin, Project leader, The Swedish national Board for Youth Affairs,Leo Mulinari, researcher, Stockholm University, Elisabet Nihlfors, Dean Educational Science, Uppsala University, UNESCO/MOST Committee, Veronica Nordlund, Project coordinatorGlobal Utmaning.
Moderator: Carl Ulrik Schierup, REMESO.

Organised by Swedish UNESCO/MOST Committee in collaboration with Commitee for Stockholm research, REMESO, Linköping University, Swedish National Board for Youth Affairs and Global Challenge.

Austere Histories

Social Exclusion and the Erasure of Colonial Memories in European Societies

International Symposium, The Museum of Work, Norrköping, 2013 

European societies have recently turned toward more austere political regimes. Evidence of this can be seen in budget cuts, management of the labor market and restrictions of welfare systems, as well as in new regimes of migration and citizenship.

In the wake of these changes new forms of social inclusion and exclusion appear that are justified through a reactivation of differences of race,class and gender, all this serving, in its turn, to justify new forms of labor extraction and the formation of a new underclass or “precariat”. Another consequence is that democracy itself has become precarious. While the agents and adherents of austerity programs impose themselves as democracy’s saviors, practitioners of democracy find themselves pushed toward the extra-parliamentary margins.

This symposium investigated how a current politics of austerity affects our cultural memory.Are we witnessing a turn toward austerity in theories and practices of historiography, as well as in pedagogies of history? Can we speak of an austere historiography, an enforcement of conformity on Europe past and present?

If this is the case, it helps explain that certain narratives of the European past are now privileged whereas other parts of the cultural heritage are weeded out. Strong tendencies and interests are apparently at work to purge the histories of specific European nations, but also those of Europe, the West, and globalisation from cultural plurality. In their stead, assertively heroic and homogeneous stories about the past of nations, regions, institutions and religions are being retold, reinvented, and re-launched. In brief, history (including public debate on history and history education) is again becoming either “nationalistic” or “cosmopolitan” – but cosmopolitan in a way that tend to celebrate the achievements of Europe and posit the West as a model of universality, humanism and perhaps also of the human as such.

Among the sacrifices of this tendency are multiculturalism, postcolonial memories, and minority discourses of all kinds. What is lost is the very complexity and contradictoriness of Europe and the West. Especially, colonial and postcolonial memories are evicted from their recently claimed habitats in the European past, and again placed at the outskirts, far beyond the limit of the Western world.

The symposium seeked to extract the correlation between how minorities, migrants and their descendants are treated by present policies and how memories and experiences of migrants,minorities and colonised peoples are treated in historiography and historical pedagogy. By bringing together a group of distinguished European scholars who have examined Europe’s colonial past in relation to migration, historiography and cultural heritage, the symposium elucidated how new regimes of historiography and memory culture relate to integration, discrimination, and social segmentation in the present.


Read about the volume edited by Stefan Jonsson and Julia Willén that was produced as a result of the symposium at Rouledge.

  • Nicolas Bancel, Université de Lausanne, Switzerland
  • Gurminder K Bhambra, The University of Warwick, Great Britain
  • Manuela Boatca, Freie Universität, Germany
  • Nacira Guénif-Souilamas, Université de Paris X, France
  • Peo Hansen, REMESO, Linköping University, Sweden
  • Lars Jensen, Roskilde University, Denmark
  • Nicola Labanca, Università degli Studi di Siena, Italy
  • Esther Captain, National Committee for the Remembrance of WWII, Netherlands
  • Robbie Shilliam, Queen Mary, University of London, Great Britain
  • Kuratorisk Aktion (Tone Olaf Nielsen & Frederikke Hansen), Copenhagen


Commentators, Panelists and Chairs:
  • David Gaunt, Södertörn University
  • Stefan Helgesson, Stockholm University
  • Stefan Jonsson, REMESO, Linköping University
  • Carsten Juhl, The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts,Denmark
  • Mikela Lundahl, University of Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Edda Manga, Uppsala University
  • Anders Neergaard, REMESO, Linköping University
  • Carl-Ulrik Schierup, REMESO, Linköping University
  • Anders Stephansson, Columbia University
  • Maria Stern, Göteborg University
  • Julia Willén, REMESO, Linköping University
  • Charles Woolfson, REMESO, Linköping University
  • Aleksandra Ålund, REMESO, Linköping University


Organised by Stefan Jonsson, Professor, REMESO, Linköping University.

Labour Rights as Human Rights?

Migration, Labour Market Restructuring and the Role of Civil Society in Global Governance

UNESCO-MOST conference, Norrköping, 2012

Recent decades have seen remoulded or new transnational migration systems across the globe. Inter- and intra-regional migration have been propelled by major political and economic changes in Eastern Europe, massive growth of industrial and service economies such as China and India and increasing conflict- and climate driven refugee movements. This is accompanied by an unprecedented mobility of capital, restructuring of economies and flexibilisation of labour markets. Hence, the new political economy of migration is linked to informalisation and precarisation of work with re-enforced ethnic, racial and gender segmentations, as well as deteriorating social rights.

On this background major international organisations have seeked to establish global normative frameworks for human and labour rights and fair rules for cross-border movement. Among them is the UN initiative for ‘fair globalization’. Another is the ILO’s ‘decent work agenda’. In addition, a range of civil society movements are engaged in redefining issues of migration and global governance in the nexus of human rights, social rights and labour rights.

This global scenario of structural change was the context for the 'Labour Rights as Human Rights?' conference in Norrköping, Sweden.

Keynote speakers

  • Stephen Castles, University of Sydney
  • Saskia Sassen, Columbia University
  • Guy Standing, University of Bath
  • Ronaldo Munck, Dublin City University
  • Raul Delgado Wise, University of Zacatecas, INMD, UNESCO


Organised by REMESO (Institute for Research on Migration, Ethnicity, and Society) at Linköping University in collaboration with the INMD (International Network for Migration and Development), under the auspices of UNESCO-MOST and with financial support from The Swedish Council for Working Life and Social Research (FAS) and the Swedish Research Council (VR).

Paradoxes of Liberalism and the Conundrum of Solidarity

International workshop

Norrköping, 2011

The background to the workshop is a growing realization that liberal democracies today harbour a set of contradictory aspirations: Ideas about multiculturalism and tolerance are pushed back in favor of nationalistic ideas about liberal core values, security and a tougher immigration policy, across Europe. A driving force is a political alliance between a neoliberalagenda for de-regulation and growth, and neo-conservative tendencies towards morality, family values and national traditions. In light of an erosion of civil, political, social and cultural rights of citizens, these trends raise questions about the conditions for social and political solidarity.

REMESO gathered a group of distinguished scholars to discuss these issues.

Panel discussions


Solidarity and Difference: New Identities in Contemporary Societies
Ellie Vasta, Associate Professor of Social Inclusion, Macquarie University, Sydney
Discussant: Diana Mulinari, Professor in Gender Studies, Lunds University

The Ideology of Universalism and the Dangerous Classes
Stefan Jonsson, Professor, REMESO, Linköping University
Discussant: Martin Peterson, Professor Emeritus, Gothenburg

Solidarity and Ethno-Nationalism in Post-Communism: the Case of Serbia
Dusan Janjic, Associate Professor, The Institute of Social Sciences, Belgrade
Discussant: Branka Likic-Brboric, Lecturer, REMESO and Fellow, Uppsala University

Solidarity and Ethno-Nationalism in Post-Communism: the Case of the Baltic States
Charles Woolfson, Professor, and Indre Genelyte, PhD, REMESO, Linköping University
Discussant: Tünde Puskás, PhD, Researcher at REMESO, Linköping University

Research on Migration, Ethnicity and Society