Whither Studies of ‘Post-Soviet’ Migrants in the UK? Key Themes in Current Academic Research

  • Darya Malyutina
Part of the Societies and Political Orders in Transition book series (SOCPOT)


While new migrant groups from the former Soviet Union have started to emerge in the UK, gradually taking shape over the course of the 2000s, researchers have been responding with numerous studies that have introduced these migrants to social scientific scholarship. When looking at a population with fuzzy outlines, different histories, citizenships, languages, political affiliations, legal aspects of their mobility and different migration patterns, the term ‘post-Soviet’ is used heuristically, rather than in order to define migrants as a group with clear boundaries. In this chapter, I review the existing scholarship on the topic, seeking to highlight its relevance and the main challenges faced by such research, tentatively structure this body of literature and disentangle its key themes, and suggest some directions for further exploration. I argue that further studies need to draw upon a more differentiated approach towards the diverse migrant populations, instead of using the umbrella terms (such as ‘Russian-speakers’) interchangeably with the more specific ones. Research needs to be embedded in politically relevant contexts (such as Brexit), and would benefit from avoiding the focus on relatively easily accessible groups (such as middle-class Russians), looking instead at groups whose migration circumstances are more connected with risk and vulnerability.


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Authors and Affiliations

  • Darya Malyutina
    • 1
  1. 1.Polish Institute of Advanced StudiesWarsawPoland

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