© 2019

The Global Market for Investor Citizenship

  • Offers theoretical, historical and empirical analysis of the growing trend of countries offering investment-based citizenship

  • Compares citizenship policies in the context of facilitating wealth-based migration at a global level

  • Highlights the resilience of sovereignty, a theme particularly important for analysing relationships among states in the increasingly globalised world


Part of the Politics of Citizenship and Migration book series (POCM)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiii
  2. Jelena Džankić
    Pages 1-23
  3. Jelena Džankić
    Pages 25-56
  4. Jelena Džankić
    Pages 213-222
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 223-225

About this book


This book presents a systematic study of the history, theory and policy of investor citizenship and residence programmes. It explores how states develop new rules of joining their community in response to globalisation and highlights the tension between citizenship policies aimed at migrant integration and those, such as the sale of passports, which create ‘long-distance citizens’. Individual chapters offer insights in the historical relationship between citizenship, money and property; discuss arguments that support and counter the practice of the sale of citizenship; and examine the interests and strategies of the different actors—states, companies, individuals—that constitute the ‘supply’ and ‘demand’ sides of the burgeoning citizenship industry. The book provides a global overview of the market for investor citizenship as well as a separate policy analysis of the sale of citizenship and residence in the European Union.

Jelena Džankić is Coordinator of the Global Citizenship Observatory (GLOBALCIT) at the European University Institute, Italy. She researches citizenship in Europe and beyond, Europeanisation, and politics of identity.


selling citizenship citizenship industry global market citizenship policies migrant integration cultural elements of nationhood globalization European Union public policy development economics international business citizenship european union politics

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.European University Institute, RSCASSan Domenico di FiesoleItaly

About the authors

Jelena Džankić is Coordinator of the Global Citizenship Observatory (GLOBALCIT) at the European University Institute, Italy. She researches citizenship in Europe and beyond, Europeanisation, and politics of identity.

Bibliographic information


“A carefully designed and clear exploration of investment-based citizenship programmes. Džankić sheds ample light onto the interests, strategies and policies of states as well as the interests of firms and individuals. The strong applied emphasis makes the book ideal for anyone who wishes to know more about ‘the global citizenship industry.’” (Theodora Kostakopoulou, Professor, Warwick University School of Law, UK)

“This book will be welcomed by everyone interested in the politics of ‘ius pecuniae.’ While most scholarship on this topic has focused on the normative challenges posed by ‘passport-for-cash’ programmes, Jelena Džankić seeks to understand how, when and why countries adopted such programmes. Her informed and critical account will provide food for thought to comparativists and normative theorists alike.” (Maarten Vink, Professor of Political Sociology, Maastricht University, Netherlands) 

“In the last ten years, the previously niche topic of investor citizenship has received widespread attention from policy-makers, journalists and scholars. Jelena Džankić has produced a must-read study of this controversial topic, which draws not only on her extensive knowledge of existing schemes, but also shows how states have long instrumentalised citizenship. At the same time, she offers a sharp critique, asking us to consider again why we might feel uneasy about the idea of money changing hands for a passport.” (Jo Shaw, Salvesen Chair of European Institutions, University of Edinburgh, UK) 

“Jelena Džankić’s book looks at the phenomenon of investor citizenship from historical, comparative and normative perspectives. This is the most comprehensive study so far of a hotly debated topic. Džankić’s book is rich in empirical detail, compelling in its conceptual analysis and accessible to a broad audience. It should be mandatory reading also for policy makers who consider putting citizenship up for sale.” (Rainer Bauböck, European University Institute and Austrian Academy of Sciences)

“In her remarkably engaging and exhaustive account of the global market for investor citizenship, Jelena Džankić takes readers from Ancient Greece to the modern-day Persian Gulf, explaining how norms and laws around who belongs where have changed to heavily factor in wealth and property. Her clear-eyed insights into citizenship acquisition and her careful surveys of the existing literature are a valuable contribution to this emerging field.” (Atossa Araxia Abrahamian, author of The Cosmopolites: The Coming of the Global Citizen)

“Some states' governments are setting price tags to citizenship statuses. Facilitating the selling of citizenship to the wealthy poses profound rule of law challenges, including legal uncertainty and cases of corruption and tax evasion. This book constitutes a must-read for anyone seeking a proper understanding of the background, main dynamics and rationales underlying citizenship-for-sale schemes.” (Sergio Carrera, Professor, Migration Policy Centre, European University Institute, Italy, and Senior Research Fellow, CEPS, Belgium)

“Should citizenship be purchased for money? Jelena Džankić has written a historically informed, comparatively rich, and politically relevant book on an important and timely question. Džankić reveals how wide citizenship-by-investment policies have become and analyzes their far-reaching consequences for democratic institutions. The book provides us with a novel way of thinking of assigning citizenship based on jus pecuniae (‘the law of money’). It is a must-read for anyone interested in—and troubled by—the changing nature of citizenship. A well-researched, greatly written, and intellectually compelling piece of scholarship!” (Liav Orgad, Director, Global Citizenship Governance, European University Institute, Italy)