Introduction: The Puzzle of Managed Migration

  • Erica Consterdine


The introduction establishes the book’s central puzzle: why do governments pursue expansive immigration policies. The chapter briefly outlines the case study and posits that the Labour government’s policy change was puzzling for at least two reasons. First, the existing political science literature has often emphasised the ‘path dependent’ character of immigration policy in Britain and indeed elsewhere (Hansen, Citizenship and Immigration in Post-war Britain. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000; Tichenor, Dividing Lines: The Politics of Immigration Control in America. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2002). Second, as the Labour government’s liberalisation of immigration policy went against public opinion, there was no electoral dividend in expanding. The chapter goes on to argue for the relevance of the nation state in immigration policymaking before briefly reviewing the three main explanations for policy liberalisation. It ends with a chapter-by-chapter overview of the contents of the book.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Erica Consterdine
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Politics and Sussex Centre for Migration ResearchUniversity of SussexBrightonUK

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