Interdisziplinäres Zentrum für Bildung und Kommunikation in Migrationsprozessen

POLITIS - Building Europe with New Citizens? An inquiry into the civic participation of naturalized citizens and foreign residents in 25 countries

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POLITIS is a special targeted research project, funded by the European Commission, 6th research framework, Citizens and Governance in a knowledge based society. It was conducted between June 2004 and September 2007. The POLITIS team is also grateful to the many other sponsors and collaborators who have supported events.


Populations of immigrant origin are growing and changing in Europe. POLITIS explores the potential of immigrants for the development of a civicly active European society, starting with foreign students’ perceptions of Europe and focusing on sustained social and political activities of immigrants.
The study is divided into 3 parts:

  • Part I: A comparative literature review on migration and immigrant civic participation in 25 member states
  • Part II: A comparative analysis of foreign students' perceptions of Europe, exploring the potential of their ideas about Europe with the help of essays and focus group discussions
  • Part III: A comparative analysis of 176 qualitative interviews with civic activists of immigrant origin in the EU to identify favourable and unfavourable biographical and national conditions for active participation


The project consists of a small core consortium, linked with a high number of partners:


The film 'Building Europe with New Citizens - introducing to an unusual research partnership' gives an insight into the objectives of the project and the preparation of the field phase during the  first summer school. The film has been produced by Benjamin Arnold and Almuth Wetzstein with support by Ana Castaneda. They are students of the University of Oldenburg.  View the film here. You need QuickTime which you can download  from You may also download the  filmcover.