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Global Development Institute

Moving the goalposts of citizenship? German business sector engagement and refugee integration

This project investigates the potential of business sector engagement in transforming engagement with refugees in Germany and through this engagement, alter citizenship practices.

Specifically, the study focuses on businesses in the ‘Wir Zusammen’ (we together) network founded in 2016 with the double aim of labour market integration and societal change through concrete solidaristic engagement. Conceptually, the project builds on the 'acts of citizenship' literature, with a focus on analysing citizenship as a practice created in everyday encounters. Methodologically, the project is based on interview and observation data with members of the business sector, trade unions and refugees in three distinct geographical settings and encompassing different types of businesses. The project thus interrogates the potential for the creation of new horizontal solidarities created through this business sector engagement. Through this, the specific case study contributes to wider debates on the potential role of business in advancing global rights and humanitarian causes.

This project is being carried out by Dr Tanja R. Müller