Past Events

16th October, 12.00-19.30

Migration and Health: Overcoming Obstacles

MMB is delighted to support this year’s Centre for Health, Law, and Society (CHLS) annual conference, which addresses the theme of migration and health.

The relationship between health and migration is complex and there has been much critical scholarship in this area at both theoretical and practical levels. The aim of this event is to bring together a range of academics and activists from across the university and externally to highlight and discuss the challenges that current migration policies pose for accessing healthcare and health outcomes.

For further details and a list of speakers, and to register, please visit the Eventbrite page.


16th October, 13.00-14.00

Overcoming adversities: The experiences of migrant and refugee youth in Australia

Australia is one of the most multicultural societies in the world. Thirty percent of the population is born overseas and has culturally and linguistically diverse heritage. Forty percent of this diverse population consists of minors from all over the world, who relocate to Australia as migrants or refugees. Schools can play an important role in their development and integration. In this presentation Nigar Khawaja will highlight some key outcomes of her 5-year long project conducted at the Milpera State High School, a special transition school for newly arrived migrant and refugee students.

Nigar is an Associate Professor at the School of Psychology and Counselling, Queensland University of Technology, Australia. Her research interests are in the area of clinical, transcultural and cross-cultural psychology.

This event is organised by the School of Psychological Sciences. All are welcome to attend and tea, coffee and cakes will be available after the seminar.

Venue: 2D3, Priory Road Complex, BS8 1TU


15th October 2019, 12.30-14.00

The Hostile Environment in Law, Policy and Practice

The introduction of in-country citizen-on-citizen immigration checks, which is the heart of the ‘hostile environment’ policy, has quietly revolutionized immigration control in the past decade. In this seminar, barrister Colin Yeo looks at the reach and extent of the hostile environment system and its effects so far and speculates on future impacts, including the conflation of undocumented with unlawful, the problems with checking immigration status rather than identity, the incentivisation of over-zealous over-enforcement by third parties and the impact of Brexit.

Colin is a barrister, writer and campaigner specialising in immigration law. He founded the Free Movement blog about immigration, asylum and nationality law in 2007 and continues to edit it today.

This event is organised by MMB. Spaces are limited so please email if you would like to attend.


24th July 2019, 14.00-16.30

Migration and Householding: Asian and Chinese Examples

Prof. C. Cindy Fan from UCLA will receive her honorary degree on the 23rd July in Bristol. She is a distinguished scholar in the field of migration studies and her work mainly involves rural-urban migration in China .

MMB is delighted to be able to host her public lecture that will take place in the Peel Lecture Theatre in Geographical Sciences (University Road) 2-3.30pm and the Hepple (same location) for refreshments afterwards.


11th July 2019, 11.00-14.00

91 Ways to Build a Global City: one shared meal at a time

Bristol is formed by many language communities. This diversity is central to ‘91 Ways to Build a Global City‘, a dynamic, social enterprise named after the 91 languages spoken in Bristol. On July 11th, 91 Ways will come to the University of Bristol for three hours of collective cooking, story-telling, learning and thinking about future forms of collaboration and common engagement.

UoB students and staff will meet the 91 Ways chefs at the Orangerie of Goldney Hall (Lower Clifton Hill, Bristol BS8 1BH) for some collective chopping, stirring, roasting and – more importantly – talking. Two vegetarian recipes and a salad will be prepared and eaten together (hopefully in the garden).

Jointly sponsored by Bristol Poverty Institute and Migration Mobilities Bristol.


3rd July 2019, 9.30-14.00

United Nations Rapporteur on the Rights of Migrants, Professor Felipe González Visit

Migration Mobilities Bristol will welcome the United Nations Rapporteur on the Rights of Migrants, Professor Felipe González, to Bristol. While this is not an official visit, and as such the Rapporteur will not produce a final report with his recommendations to the UK, we will take the opportunity to present academic work on issues related to the mandate of the UN Rapporteur.


2nd July 2019, 12.00-17.00

Image-making in migration research and campaigns

Photographic representations of refugee and asylum seekers in the media have played an important role in shaping public attitudes to, and perceptions of, migration. Migration researchers, refugee support groups, campaigners and artists have utilised photographic images to counter negative depictions, mobilise empathy or promote and explain their findings or activities to a wider public.

This workshop aims to identify uses of photographic images of refugees and asylum seekers in migration research and campaigning work. It will also explore problems and challenges as well as alternative approaches (photographic or otherwise) to visual representation of migration and displacement.

The workshop is part of the Imagination, Belonging, Futures research challenge, one of four strands of Migration Mobilities Bristol.


24th-28th June, 09.00-18.00

Eritrea in the News

MMB is delighted to support this stunning photographic exhibition that reveals a series of images captured at pivotal points in Eritrea’s history, from Italian colonial rule through to the struggle for independence and the repression of dictatorship that followed.

Featuring more than 40 images – a mix of archival and personal collections recently brought to light – the exhibition shows the trajectory of Eritrea in a visual snapshot of the places and people that have shaped the country, stretching as far back as 1882 up to the present day. Today, after decades of repression, there is a glimmer of hope as Ethiopia has reached out to Eritrea. Their leaders have met and there is the prospect of reconciliation. Yet Eritreans still long for true freedom.

This timely exhibition has been curated by Eritrea Focus and forms part of Bristol Refugee Festival 2019. Venue: Colston Hall Foyer. For further information click here.


24th June 2019, 14.00-16.00

Film Screening: Bembé do Mercado

Migration Mobilities Bristol (MMB) and the Department of Hispanic, Portuguese and Latin American Studies are delighted to present the Brazilian film: Bembé do Mercado  (2019).

The screening will be followed by discussions with the anthropologist and director of the film, Dr Thaís Brito (Federal University of Reconcavo Baiano-Brazil). The event, chaired by Dr. José Lingna Nafafé (Department of Hispanic, Portuguese and Latin American Studies) is part of the activities of the MMB research challenge Control, Conflict, Resistance and of the research project ‘Modern Marronage: the pursuit and practice of freedom in the contemporary world‘.


11 June 2019, 12.00 – 1.00 pm

Migration, Ageing and Digital Kinning: The role of distant care support networks in experiences of ageing well

Prof. Loretta Baldassar will be speaking as part of the School of Education’s ‘Bristol Conversations in Education’ seminar series about high rates of migration contributing to the dispersal of support networks across distance and national borders. The presentation will discuss the importance of distant support networks maintained with communication technologies, through a process of ‘digital kinning’. These seminars are free and open to the public.


6th June 2019,  09:30-17:00

Migration, ageing and older people: action to improve research, data and policy

The School for Policy Studies are holding a one day workshop, funded by Elizabeth Blackwell Institute for Health Research, to discuss evidence gaps and ethical/methodological challenges for research and policy discussion on migration and ageing. Further details on the project can be found from Ann Singleton –


29th May 2019, 5.00-7.00 pm

Methodology Lab— What links migration, trade and money?

Are you now starting to plan your summer writing projects? To gain some inspiration for your aspiration, please join us for a cross-disciplinary roundtable discussion featuring:

  • Chris Bertram, Professor of Social and Political Philosophy, School of Arts
  • Tamar Hodos, Reader in Mediterranean Archaeology, School of Arts
  • Tonia Novitz, Professor of Labour Law, School of Law

The speakers will talk about some of the research projects they are currently working on, the methodologies they use, and the theoretical frames they draw on. We’ll use their brief comments to launch into a general discussion to help us , so please bring any ideas that you have for your anticipated projects.


16th May, 12.30-2pm

Migration and Poverty – Interdisciplinary lunchtime seminar series

The Bristol Poverty Institute (BPI) and Migration Mobilities Bristol (MMB) are pleased to announce a collaborative interdisciplinary lunchtime seminar on the topic of Migration and Poverty. The seminar will commence with several short presentations on the themes of migration and poverty and how these intersect from a range of disciplinary perspectives – including household livelihoods, welfare and integration, political economy, law, and social anthropology – which will be followed by an open discussion within the room. Participants are welcome to discuss issues related to migration and poverty on local, national or international scales, and can explore any aspect of this.


16th May, 6-7,30 pm

“How to Live Free in an Age of Pessimism” Public Lecture by Neil Roberts

Migration Mobilities Bristol and the Centre for Black Humanities warmly invite you to attend a public lecture by NEIL ROBERTS, associate professor of Africana studies, political theory, and the philosophy of religion at Williams College, and author of the award-winning book Freedom as Marronage (University of Chicago Press, 2015) and A Political Companion to Frederick Douglass (The University Press of Kentucky, 2018). His talk features pieces of his latest book project that examines what it means to live free, the challenges of genres of pessimism, and finally provides a way forward for the pessimistic. Neil Roberts is a member of the Advisory Board for the Bristol based ERC funded project ‘Modern Marronage: the Pursuit and Practice of Freedom in the Contemporary World’, and his lecture also addresses how his current work connects to his on going scholarship on marronage.


17th May 2019

The ethics of resistance to immigration control

This workshop in political theory will look at the ethics of resistance to immigration controls and the rights and duties of migrants and citizens in the face of restrictions on free movement and state policies that criminalize solidarity with those seeking sanctuary. The workshop will discuss resistance to detention, civil disobedience in the face of state controls and deportation, the permissibility of smuggling, and the tension between the law’s claims to obedience and conflicting duties including those of justice, humanity, solidarity and rescue.

Confirmed speakers: Udit Bhatia (Oxford), Mollie Gerver (Essex), Guy Aitchison (KCL), Patti Lenard (Ottawa), Jenny Allsopp (SOAS), Yasha Maccanico (Bristol).


15th May 2019, 4-7pm

Film Screenings and Fundraiser: Becky’s Journey (2014) and Travel (2016)

Migration Mobilities Bristol (MMB) warmly invites you for the screening of the films: Becky’s Journey (Sine Pamblech, 2014) and Travel  (Nicola Mai, 2016). The screening will be followed by discussions with the ethnographers and filmmakers Sine Pamblech (Senior Researcher and Film Director at the Danish Institute for International Studies, Copenhagen) and Nicola Mai (Professor of Sociology Migration Studies at London Metropolitan University), in conversation with George Gumisiriza (MA Student at SPAIS, Sanctuary Scholarships UoB).  The event, chaired by Dr Nariman Missoumi (Lecturer, Department of Film and Television, UoB), is part of the activities of the Research Challenge ‘Control, conflict, resistance” (MMB) and of the Research Project ‘Modern Marronage: the pursuit and practice of freedom in the contemporary world‘.

This event is also an opportunity to support Bristol Refugee Rights (BRR) to keep their important activities for migrants, refugees and asylum seekers, as we will be receiving donations that will be directed to BRR.

Venue:  Cinema (5.90), Dept of Film and Television, Richmond Building, 5th Floor, 105 Queens Road, BS8 1LN


13th May 2019,  5-7 pm

Arts Against Racism and Borders

As Brexit debates and the Hostile Environment have shown, the impulse to erect borders against racialised populations is a powerful force in contemporary politics. To counter its devastating effects and communicate with a wide range of audiences, researchers and activists cannot appeal exclusively to causal arguments. This workshop will discuss artistic engagements with those subject to racial injustice and consider how their creativity can be mobilised to advance the theory of free movement. This will be the first workshop of the Bodies, Borders, Justice research challenge.

Speakers include:

  • Zita Holbourne (Black Activists Rising Against Cuts, Artists Union England)
  • Agata Vitale (Bath Spa University)
  • Judy Ryde (Trauma Foundation South West)


16th April 2019, 2-5pm

Collaborating to improve responses to migration: Language

This event will discuss language use and learning, intra-linguistic diversity, translation and interpretation services and the drivers of individual and organisational multilingualism. Led by Pier Dupont (UoB), with Rachel Sharp and Tom Dixon (ACH/Himilo). ACH meeting room

Jointly organised by MMB and ACH/Himilo.


5th April 2019, 11-3pm

Bridges not walls: escaping disciplinary borders – MMB networking event

Interested in enticing exchanges, startling connections, quickfire arguments? Our MMB networking event will be a great opportunity to meet colleagues across faculties and try out that new idea (and some old ones). Even if you don’t think you are working on “migration” you will be surprised by the connections we find. No preparation required.


27th & 28th March 2019

Risky Relationships: navigating immigration regulation in family and intimate relationships

The Risky Relationships workshop invites participants to view the contemporary landscape of family migration and ‘intimate mobilities’ (Groes & Fernandez 2018) from the analytical perspective of risk. The optic of risk has appeared in various forms in the migration research literature, including work on internal migration as a household risk management strategy (Stark & Levhari 1982),  the physical risks of irregular migration (e.g. Sheridan 2009), and ethnic minority responses to immigration regulations (Charsley 2006), but has not been widely employed in the literature on international mobility. For couples and families divided by borders, or with mixed immigration status, immigration regulation creates risks of separation, and futures contingent on navigating a variety of economic, legal, practical and emotional risks. Increasing restrictions to family migration have both heightened the risks involved and expanded them to affect a wider variety of actors. Discourses of risk are also employed to justify tightening restrictions on family migration, and to distinguish some kinds of border-crossing relationship from others. This workshop aims to consider issues such as:

  • The emerging diversity of responses to the risks of negotiating relationships contingent on migration, and migration contingent on relationships.
  • How risks patterned along ethnic, racial, socio-economic, gendered or other lines may be reinforced or reconfigured.
  • What types of relationships are defined as particularly risky, in what ways, and by whom?
  • How are narratives of risk and protection employed in discourses around transnational relationships and their regulation?
  • What are the implications of changing approaches to family migration (including under Brexit) for these risks?
  • What is lost or gained by viewing contemporary family migration from the perspective of risk?

This workshop is by invitation only.  Organised by Katharine Charsley, co-sponsored by Migration Mobilities Bristol (MMB), the University of Bristol & the University of the West of England (UWE).


26th March 2019, 2-5pm

Collaborating to improve responses to migration: Employment and the labour market

This event will discuss short term, skill shortages, diversity issues, employer engagement and longer-term issues such as the changing structure of the labour market and recruitment methods. Led by Tonia Novitz and Harry Pitts (UoB), with David Jepson and Lydia Samuel (ACH/Himilo)

UoB, Priory Road Complex E BLK Rm 2E2

Jointly organised by MMB and ACH/Himilo. Spaces are limited so to register please email:


21st March, 5-7 pm

Reimagining Refugee Rights: Research Report and ‘Right to Remain’ Asylum Navigation board Launch

Seeking asylum in the UK can be a difficult process. People often feel that they are alone or isolated. It can be a long period of uncertainty. This event will launch tools for understanding and addressing the harms embedded in the UK asylum system. Frances Webber (Institute of Race Relations) will highlight issues around the increasing criminalisation of humanitarian support for refugees. Victoria Canning (University of Bristol) will outline findings from the newly released report Reimagining Refugee Rights: Addressing Asylum Harms in Britain, Denmark and Sweden. We will then provide an interactive demonstration of the newly established Right to Remain Asylum Navigation board with Lisa Matthews (co-ordinator, Right to Remain). Copies of the report and the board will be available to buy, and migrant rights organisations will be in attendance to discuss solidarity movements, support and volunteering opportunities.

This is a free event – people seeking asylum, activists, practitioners, students and NGOs particularly welcome. It will be held in the Hepple Lecture Theatre, Geographical Sciences, University Road.  For further information please email –

Report and navigation board funded by ESRC; event funded by Migration and Mobilities Bristol.


8th March 2019, 2-3.30pm

The Global Compact for Migration: Views from Asia, Africa and Latin America

Oliver Bakewell (University of Manchester) and Nicola Piper (Queen Mary University) will join Diego Acosta from the Bristol Law School to discuss the impact of the Compact on Africa, Asia and Latin America

The UN Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration was adopted in a special conference in Marrakech in December 2018 and later confirmed in the UN General Assembly, where 152 countries voted in favour. Whilst much has been written about those opposing the Compact and voting against it (Czech Republic, Hungary, Israel, Poland, United States) little is known about the position of the three major global regions under analysis in this event: Africa, Asia and Latin America. In this seminar, three speakers with specialist knowledge of migration in these regions will discuss the significance of the Global Compact.

Jointly hosted by Migration Mobilities Bristol and the University of Bristol Law School


27 February 2019, 4.430-6pm

Israel’s exclusionary migration policies: a view from the Global Compacts

Dr Ruvi Ziegler, University of Reading

Israel is one of the very few countries that have refused to sign up to the’Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration’. It also has, despite being a signatory to the 1951 Geneva Convention, one of the lowest global refugee recognition rates. The talk juxtaposes Israel’s permanent transience immigration policy against the recently adopted (non-binding) global compacts.

Jointly hosted by Migration Mobilities Bristol and the University of Bristol Law School


11th February 2019, 2-5pm

Collaborating to improve responses to migration: Integration

What is the nature of the integration process with established communities? We discussed the role of social, cultural and civic networks with a focus on refugees and migrants. Led by Katharine Charsley (UoB), with Richard Thickpenny (ACH/Himilo)

UoB, Wills Memorial Building Rm 1.5

Jointly organised by MMB and ACH/Himilo


Thursday, 7th February, 5pm

Mapping migrant worker rights violations in England through the Migrant Worker Rights Database

Anna Boucher (University of Sydney)

Globally, there is much attention from academics, policy-makers and intergovernmental agencies to the tracking of migrant rights abuses on paper. Various databases and norm-generating documents have been produced to draw attention to this issue. However, at the same time as attention to the plight of migrant workers is increasing, we lack a clear evidence base to understand the extent and nature of such abuses in practice across time, countries and visa categories. This presentation summarised findings from a new Migrant Worker Rights Database that develops an innovative method to trace the nature and extent of migrant worker rights abuses on the ground. By coding all available legal decisions on migrant worker rights violations across an array of areas of employment, civil liabilities, human rights and criminal law, as well as sociological features, the Database reveals a new evidence base for understanding the nature and extent of rights violations. It codes these violations in England in all available court and tribunal decisions from 1996 through to 2016. This seminar will presented initial descriptive statistics around ethnicity, gender and occupational status, illuminating some of the key findings of the English case.

Jointly hosted by Migration Mobilities Bristol and the Centre for the Study of Ethnicity and Citizenship


14th November 2018, 13.00-15.00

Model International Mobility Convention

Professor Michael Doyle specializes in international relations, international security, and international organizations and will present the: ‘Model International Mobility Convention’ developed by a Commission of eminent academic and policy experts in the fields on migration, human rights, national security, labour economics and refugee law. 

International mobility—the movement of individuals across borders for any length of time as visitors, students, tourists, labour migrants, entrepreneurs, long-term residents, asylum seekers, or refugees—has no common definition or legal framework. To address this key gap in international law, and the growing gaps in protection and responsibility that are leaving people vulnerable, the ‘Model International Mobility Convention’ proposes a framework for mobility with the goals of reaffirming the existing rights afforded to mobile people (and the corresponding rights and responsibilities of states) as well as expanding those basic rights where warranted. The Columbia Journal of Transnational Law published the Model International Mobility Convention in a Special Issue in January 2018. Further details on the Convention.


9th July 2018 – 12th July 2018

Migration Data for Policy Summer School

The Summer School on Migration Data for Policy is a new initiative of the International Organization for Migration Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (IOM GMDAC) and the University of Bristol, building on the close collaboration already developed through the Worldwide Universities Network  IOM Strategic Alliance through the Migration, Development and Global Transformations interdisciplinary group.  Further information.

Hosted by the University of Bristol and the IOM GMDAC in collaboration with the Worldwide Universities Network