© 2018

Qualitative Research in European Migration Studies

  • Ricard Zapata-Barrero
  • Evren Yalaz


  • This open access book addresses key issues and major challenges at different stages of conducting qualitative migration research

  • Offers an interdisciplinary approach to European migration studies

  • Discusses theoretical, epistemological and ethical relative strengths and limitations of qualitative research in European migration studies.

Open Access

Part of the IMISCOE Research Series book series (IMIS)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvi
  2. Ricard Zapata-Barrero, Evren Yalaz
    Pages 1-8 Open Access
  3. Evren Yalaz, Ricard Zapata-Barrero
    Pages 9-31 Open Access
  4. Theoretical and Epistemological Issues

  5. Building a Qualitative Research Design

  6. Qualitative Techniques and Data Analysis

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 169-169
    2. Paolo Boccagni, Mieke Schrooten
      Pages 209-225 Open Access
    3. Teun A. van Dijk
      Pages 227-245 Open Access
  7. Significant Requirements Before Embarking

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 267-267
    2. Ilse van Liempt, Veronika Bilger
      Pages 269-285 Open Access

About this book


This open access book covers the main issues, challenges and techniques concerning the application of qualitative methodologies to the study of migration. It discusses theoretical, epistemological and empirical questions that must be considered before, during, and after undertaking qualitative research in migration studies. It also covers recent innovative developments and addresses the key issues and major challenges that qualitative migration research may face at different stages i.e. crafting the research questions, defining approaches, developing concepts and theoretical frameworks, mapping categories, selecting cases, dealing with concerns of self-reflection, collecting and processing empirical evidence through various techniques, including visual data, dealing with ethical issues, and developing policy-research dialogues. Each chapter discusses relative strengths and limitations of qualitative research. The chapters also identify the main drivers for qualitative research development in migration studies. It is a unique volume as it brings together a multidisciplinary perspective as well as illustrations of different issues derived from the research experience of the recognized authors. One additional value of this book is its geographic focus on Europe.  It seeks to explore theoretical and methodological issues that are raised by distinctive features of the European context. This volume will be a useful reference source for scholars and professionals in migration studies and in social sciences as well.  The publication is also addressed to graduate and post-graduate students and, more generally, to those who embark on the task of doing qualitative research for the first time in the field of migration.


European migration studies Methodology of social sciences Qualitative research methods Human mobility Open access Migration Studies Qualitative methodology European migration research Epistemology in migration research Interdisciplinary migration research

Editors and affiliations

  • Ricard Zapata-Barrero
    • 1
  • Evren Yalaz
    • 2
  1. 1.Political and Social Sciences DepartmentUniversity of Pompeu Fabra – GRITIM-UPFBarcelona-CataloniaSpain
  2. 2.Political and Social Sciences DepartmentUniversity of Pompeu Fabra – GRITIM-UPFBarcelona-CataloniaSpain

About the editors

Ricard Zapata-Barrero is a Full Professor in the Department of Political and Social Sciences, at Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Barcelona-Catalonia). His main lines of research deal with contemporary issues of liberal democracy in contexts of diversity, especially the relationship between democracy, citizenship, human mobility and immigration. Director of GRITIM-UPF (Interdisciplinary Research Group on Immigration) and the MSc in Migration Studies at UPF. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the largest research network on Immigration in Europe IMISCOE.  He is also a member of several academic journals editorial boards, and of scientific committees of various  research centers. Occasional contributor to media and policy debates. 

Evren Yalaz is a post-doctoral researcher at Interdisciplinary Research Group on Immigration, University of Pompeu Fabra (GRITIM-UPF). She received her Ph.D. from the Department of Political Science at Rutgers University. Her research interests engage with questions about the politics of migrants, transnationalism, migrants' community organizations, and comparative politics of citizenship, migration, and integration. In her dissertation, she examined the sources of variations in trajectories of immigrant political incorporation by focusing on Turkish immigrants and their organizations in Germany and France. Currently, she works at a comparative project that analyzes non-electoral political mobilization of Spanish emigrants in different European cities.

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Qualitative Research in European Migration Studies
  • Editors Ricard Zapata-Barrero
    Evren Yalaz
  • Series Title IMISCOE Research Series
  • Series Abbreviated Title IMISCOE Research Series
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2018
  • License CC BY
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Social Sciences Social Sciences (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-319-76860-1
  • Softcover ISBN 978-3-030-08311-3
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-319-76861-8
  • Series ISSN 2364-4087
  • Series E-ISSN 2364-4095
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XVI, 302
  • Number of Illustrations 21 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Migration
    Methodology of the Social Sciences
    Sociology, general
  • Buy this book on publisher's site


“This excellent volume makes a much needed contribution to the field of migration research. The book is quite unique in bringing together epistemological and methodological issues. The peculiarity of this volume is in its truly multidisciplinary perspective. The use of examples from the contributors’ work to illuminate critical issues in qualitative research on immigration is particularly welcome.” (Professor Anna Triandafyllidou, Global Governance Programme, European University Institute)

“This volume constitutes an ideal tool for planning and carrying out qualitative research on migration issues. It gives important advice on different aspects around the study of migration processes: from a deep understanding of migration causes and dynamics to producing new insights for the theoretical understanding of contemporary migrations; from constituting a solid corpus of new data for evidence-based informed policy making to a critical assessment of public discussions and policies on migrants.” (Professor Enzo Colombo, University of Milan, UNIMI, Department of Social and Political Sciences)