Skip to main content

When poverty meets affluence: Migrant street workers in Scandinavia

Prosjektet handler om tilreisende fattige fra Romania i de tre skandinaviske hovedstedene. Sentrale problemstillinger er organiseringen av migrasjonen, levekårskonsekvenser for migrantene selv og familiene hjemme, samt sårbarhet og utnytting. Prosjektet bygger videre på data innsamlet i et prosjekt finansiert av Rockwool Fondet, som ble lansert i juni 2015, men det skal også innhentes nye data. I tillegg skal mediedebatten og politikkutformingen i de skandinaviske landene analyseres.

The phenomenon of EU migrants who go abroad to beg, collect bottles, trade and do other types of informal “street work” (Adriaenssen 2011) has featured on the political agendas of most European countries over the last decade. While the EU framework was intended to encourage the free movement of labour, there is little regulation in place to address the free movement of poverty. As unwanted mobility from EU member states can no longer be stopped at the borders, European states have come to depend on internal policing and regulations in attempts to regulate these practices. Thus far, there has been little research into this particular form of mobility and the related institutional responses.

This project addresses this knowledge gap. Drawing on theories of economic sociology and institutional theory, we will explore the causes for and outcomes of this mobility, its organisation and the development and impact of policies and discourses in countries of destination. As this mobility in many ways represents an “extreme” case of transnational migration and ethnic relations, knowledge about the mechanisms involved may challenge or strengthen assumptions within existing theories. The project will therefore engage with wider theoretical debates within the field of migration studies.

Programme for workshop wednesday 19. may 2016

Download astracts (pdf)

11.00 Welcome and presentation of project by Anne Britt Djuve
11.10 – 12.40 Roma identity, migration and begging
• Jon Horgen Friberg: Poverty, networks, resistance: Towards an economic sociology of marginal migration, begging and ‘street work’ among Romanian Roma in Scandinavia
• Mika Tervonen: Coping with everyday bordering: Eastern-European Roma migrants in Helsinki
• Comments and discussion.
12.40 Lunch
13.15 -14.45 Marginalization and Roma in Romania
• Enico Vincze: Racialization and association of "The Roma" with ‘East European poverty’"
• George Zamfir and Simona Ciotlaus: Project-based 'poverty alleviation' and institutional assemblages designed for spaces of exclusion"
• Comments and discussion.
14.45-15.00 Break
15:00-16.30 Policing the poor
• Malcom Langford: The human rights violation of policing the poor.
• Anne Britt Djuve: Regulating migration within the EU. Impacts of measures to discourage Romania’s poor from migrating to Scandinavia.
• Comments and discussion.
19:00 Departure from hotel for dinner

Thursday 19 May
9:00-11:30 The reception of poor migrants and beggars in Western Europa
• Sara Walker : Begging and the free movement of poverty
• Guri Tyldum: Hostile discourses and migrants experiences of harassment
• Karin Borevi: Studying discourses on begging and street work in Scandinavia
• Comments and discussion.
11.30 Concluding remarks and final discussion
12:00 Lunch


  • Prosjektleder:
  • Anne Britt Djuve


  • Oppstart:
    oktober 2015
  • Avsluttes:
    desember 2018


  • VAM (Norges forskningsråd)