Over the last decades, immigration has transformed the demographic structure of European societies significantly. There has been a perceivable increase in the number of immigrants and especially in the last three years the arrival of refugees has led to new political cleavages within and between European societies and states. The political and social challenges of this development are not yet sufficiently clear. It is therefore necessary to closely investigate the relationship between migration and democracy.

The Mercator Forum “Migration and Democracy” (MIDEM) examines, how migration influences democratic policies, institutions, and cultures and how it is in turn influenced by them. This research will look at how political processes and structures deal with migration – both within single countries as well as in a comparative perspective on different states and societies in Europe.

The research group “Institutional and political processing of migration” at the University of Duisburg-Essen is focused particularly on investigating how various European parliaments deal with migration-related issues. Relevant questions include, which are the effects of different modes of negotiation and debate (especially in light of assumptions in controversies on deliberative democracy) and how given modes of political processing determine respective policies and their implementation or success.

MIDEM is a collaborative research project of the Technical University Dresden and the University of Duisburg-Essen funded by the STIFTUNG MERCATOR.
More information can be found on the project’s website.



Andreas Niederberger (info)

Andreas Blätte (info)


Project duration: 2017-2020


Project Website