Attracting and Retaining Migrants in Post-Brexit Scotland: Is a Social Integration Strategy the Answer?
SSAMIS researcher Dr Paulina Trevena secured funding from the Scottish Parliament and the University of Glasgow's Impact Acceleration Account to carry out a project scoping opinion on the idea of introducing a national-level social integration strategy for all migrants in Scotland. The project ran from September 2017 to July 2018. The key questions it addressed were:
- Is a social integration strategy for newcomers and migrants already living in Scotland needed?
- Is it practicable?
- Would it improve the lives of those who have come to live here?
- Would it attract other migrants to come to Scotland?
- Where does the local population stand on this?
The study was based on focus group discussions and expert interviews. Participants included local authorities, employers, third sector organisations, academics, different groups of migrants (asylum seekers, refugees, economic migrants, students and those arriving as family members), as well as representatives of established populations.
Low-skilled Labour Migration to Scotland after Brexit: Assessing the Options
The Scottish Government co-funded the project as ‘a valuable development of the evidence base in relation to low-skilled labour migration, and the critical assessment of a range of programmes in terms of their ability to meet Scotland's migration goals which will assist the Scottish Government in better understanding the mobility, work and settlement decisions of Scotland's EEA migrants’ (Head of the Migration and Free Movement of People Unit, Rachel Sutherland). The published report ‘Choices Ahead: Approaches to lower skilled labour migration after Brexit’ attracted significant media attention highlighting the importance of incorporating migrant experiences and decision-making processes into policy design.
SSAMIS principal investigator, Professor Rebecca Kay and researchers Dr Holly Porteous and Kyle Taggart, in collaboration with Professor Christina Boswell and Dr Sarah Kyambi (University of Edinburgh) received joint funding from the University of Glasgow and University of Edinburgh’s Impact Acceleration Account to work on a new project, ‘Low-skilled Labour Migration to Scotland after Brexit: Assessing the Options’, which ran from January to June 2018. The Scottish Government co-funded the project. The published report ‘Choices Ahead: Approaches to lower skilled labour migration after Brexit’ attracted significant media attention highlighting the importance of incorporating migrant experiences and decision-making processes into policy design.
The Edinburgh team analysed existing models of migration programmes from a range of industrialised countries, whilst the Glasgow team undertook policy-oriented analysis of the existing SSAMIS dataset and conducted additional consultations with groups of migrants. working in low-skilled sectors (e.g. care, hospitality, retail) in the Highlands, North Ayrshire and Aberdeenshire as a means of assessing migrants’ opinions on how these different policy options might have affected their decision to choose Scotland as a destination.
The project produced a final report:
The content of the report was also reflected in a number of blog posts and media coverage as highlighted below.