Migrant Integration Centers: A local facility/centre for the social integration of migrants

Evaggelia Kapiniari

In recent years the role of local government in social policy is being enhanced constantly, both at national and European level, while at the same time the rise of migration flows has increased the needs for social integration policies of third country nationals. In this context the Migrant Integration Centers (MIC) were established, as units of the Community Centers. Migrant Integration Centers are municipality structures, complementary of the municipalities’ social services, which provide information and support to migrants that live in the area in order to promote social integration.

This paper investigates the way the Migrant Integration Centers were designed and implemented in order to analyse the role of local government in planning and implementing social integration policies for migrants and refugees, taking into account the upward trend of enhancing the role of local government in social policy as well as the conceptual framework of migrants integration at national and European level.

By analysing the newly founded institution of Migrant Integration Centers and conducting a qualitative research in eight (8) of them, what is pointed out is, on the one hand the fragmented character of national migrant integration policies and their correlation to Community resources and on the other the significant but state driven role of the local government. Even though the institutions of local government in the field of social policy are state dependent, they have shown a flexibility and autonomy in developing networks and cooperating with the civil society which upgrades them as factors which form a new social policy framework.

Thesis Committee Members
Academic Year
2019 - 2020