Immigration and Integration: Allies, Companions, or Antagonists?

DOI: 10.20542/0131-2227-2017-61-7-73-82

M. Klupt (,
St. Petersburg State University of Economics, 21, Sadovaya Str., St. Petersburg, 191023, Russian Federation 

Abstract. The paper analyses interaction among immigration, social cohesion and international integration in light of the recent political developments. Political markets theory is employed to elucidate the rise of disagreements on integration and immigration policies in Western societies. Three stage of this process are subdivided: (1) small and unorganized anti-immigrant groups are neglected by ruling elites; (2) a rising demand for restrictive immigration policy revives anti-immigrant parties, which are marginal and non-systemic up to a certain point; (3) some mainstream political parties influenced by anti-immigrant backlash begin to campaign for a restrictive immigration policy, that, in its turn, consolidates liberal and immigrant voters and reinforces the schism. The third stage is also characterized by heated disputes on a country’s international agreements. Nowadays, Germany is at the second stage of this prosses, while the U.S., the UK, Hungary and Poland at the third one. As statistical analysis shows, the character of social and spatial fragmentation provoked by controversies on immigration and international integration issues, has much in common both in the UK and the U. S. Those who have voted for Brexit in the UK and for Donald Trump in the U.S. were predominantly white, men, forty or older, skilled workers, no degree. The spatial fragmentation was layered in both countries, e.g. Scotland and London vs the rest of England, the Great Plains vs the coasts in the U.S., etc. Thus, the cleavage in Western societies is deeply rooted in their social and spatial structures. It is also a by-product of international integration, or more precisely, its certain version, aggressive and directed against national identity and sovereignty. To mitigate the contradictions another policy is vital, less offensive and paying tribute to both countries’ peculiarities and interests of the host societies’ different strata. 

Keywords: immigration, international integration, social cohesion, social structure, ethnical structure, voting 


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For citation:
Klupt M. Immigration and Integration: Allies, Companions, or Antagonists?. World Eonomy and International Relations, 2017, vol. 61, No 7, pp. 73-82.

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