Comparative Migration Studies

, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp 283–304 | Cite as

Migrants’ Multi-Sited Social Lives

Interactions between Sociocultural Integration and Homeland Engagement
  • Özge BilgiliEmail author
Open Access


This paper challenges the assimilationist assumption that suggests migrants cannot be simultaneously embedded in multiple societies. Based on survey data collected among Afghan, Burundian, Ethiopian and Moroccan migrants in the Netherlands, the paper shows that overall sociocultural integration in the Netherlands and sociocultural homeland engagement are significantly positively correlated. Moreover, it demonstrates that migrants with more contact with their co-ethnics in the Netherlands tend to engage more in sociocultural activities oriented towards their home country. Besides, the influence of favourable political and security situations and economic prospects in the home countries is brought to the fore in relation to migrant groups’ sociocultural homeland engagement. The paper consequently highlights the prevalence of transnational ways of living and calls for theoretical adjustments in line with migrants’ multi-sited social lives and more inclusive policy approaches that recognize the relevance of dual-citizenship in this contemporary context.


Transnationalism sociocultural integration homeland engagement return visits migrants in the Netherlands 


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Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits use, duplication, adaptation, distribution, and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Maastricht Graduate School of Governance and Barcelona Center for International AffairsMaastricht UniversityMaastrichtThe Netherlands

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