International Conference

LOOKING BEYOND THE CRISES: IMPACT OF MASS MIGRATIONS ON THE LOCAL, REGIONAL, NATIONAL AND EU GOVERNANCE

11-14 May 2017

Dubrovnik, Croatia

, Organized by

Institute for Public Administration, Croatia

Under the auspices of the President of the Croatian Parliament

In collaboration with

International Political Science Association (IPSA)

Research Committee 05 Comparative Studies on Local Government and Politics and Research Committee 32 Public Policy & Administration

With the support of

Study Centre for Public Administration and Public Finance,Faculty of Law, University of Zagreb, Croatia

UNHCR, Zagreb



General aim and topic of the Conference

Over the past few decades many countries around the World have been faced with major movements of refugees and migrants from countries where they have experienced war, persecution, or economic or environmental pressure.

Although displacement is not a new phenomenon, 2015 witnessed the largest mass migration of people to and within Europe since World War II, mainly caused by the war in Syria which created more than 10 million internally displaced people and refugees. The EU is struggling to find the appropriate and common response to refugee influx, trying to accommodate refugees, sustain national security, and reassure the host populations.

The main challenge for the future will be the integration of refugees and migrants who remain in Europe after the crisis. To varying degrees, European societies have been struggling with increasing diversity for years and many countries failed to integrate the previous migrants effectively. The approach to the integration process has varied from country to country, depending on the history of migration movements in the given country, the number and characteristics of migrants and their arrivals, the overall policy toward migration, the economic situation in the country, and the programmes in place to assist migrants. While integration policies remain a competence of the Member States, the EU has created a common framework for the integration of migrants as well as different initiatives to promote integration. The EU has recognized that integration is a necessary part of the comprehensive migration and refugee policies, and that it is strongly relate to economic growth and social cohesion.

The integration of migrants is a policy area where a local approach is particularly important. Cities have long been an especially attractive destination for migrants; therefore the setting of integration policies has imposed itself as a necessity. However, the integration policies, as a multifaceted issue which cuts across different policy areas, are usually decided at the national or regional levels with varying success in practice. Local authorities are often left to their own devices in setting integration policies, adjusting or mitigating the lack of success of policies at the national level. In addition, the responsibility for migrant integration is very often divided among different government departments and reliant on bringing together services which have been contracted out and delegated to different actors, such as private service providers and non-profit organisations.

In the light of longstanding debates about the challenges of integration in the host societies, the conference is aimed at discussing different experiences of the local units with regard to integration of refugees and migrants.

The participants are invited to particularly discuss the following issues:
  • The nexus between EU framework for the integration of migrants and refugees and recent developments at the level of Member States.
  • Best practices and different approaches to tackle implementation of national integration policies for refugees and migrants at the local level.
  • Challenges in the development and implementation of local integration policies in the context of historical patterns, lessons offered by past experience, as well as contemporary migration trends.
  • Impact of migration on local and regional public services, such as health, education, social care, and their performance, especially in the light of economic and fiscal crises.
  • The problem of coordination of different actors involved in the implementation of integration policies when delivered through a complex set of organisations operating at various levels.
  • Administrative capacities of local, regional and national administrations which should be strengthened in order to develop and implement local integration policies.
  • Implications and challenges that migration trends bring to the management of cultural diversity in local communities.
  • The role of migration in shaping the future of cities, in order to respond to the needs, challenges, and opportunities posed by migrants as new residents.

Date and Conference format

The conference will last from Thursday, May 11 to Sunday, May 14, 2017 and will be held in the CAAS premises in Dubrovnik. It will be organized in the form of plenary sessions and several topical panel sessions.

Tentative schedule of the Conference is the following:
  • Thursday, 11 May 2017 – afternoon session –PhD panels
  • Friday, 12 May 2017 – opening of the Conference, morning and afternoon sessions
  • Saturday, 13 May 2017 – morning and afternoon sessions
  • Sunday, 14 May 2017 – morning session and closing of the Conference
Selection procedure, submission of papers and important deadlines

All interested may notify their interest in participation by 15 November 2016, attaching the proposed titles and abstracts (300-500 words). The selection of papers is based on the academic interests and current research of the invited candidates as well as their involvement in the corresponding research networks. The invited participants will be informed about selection procedure results by 30 November 2016.The invited participants should send their draft papers by 31 March 2017. The papers should not exceed 10.000 words limit.

A summary of important deadlines:
  • 15 November 2016 – Submission of abstracts to the Organizing Committee - extended to 15 December 2016
  • 15 January 2017 – Notification of abstract acceptance
  • March 2017 – Circulation of Draft Conference Programe
  • 31 March 2017 – Submission of draft papers
  • 7-10 May 2017 – Conference in Dubrovnik
Publication opportunities

Selection of presented papers will be invited for submissionby the international scientific journal Croatian and Comparative Public Administration.There is an opportunity of preparing an edited volume which publisher is the Institute of Public Administration, Zagreb, Croatia.

Venue and accommodation

The Conference will be organized at the Centre for Advanced Academic Studies (CAAS) in Dubrovnik, Croatia (address: Don FranaBulića 4, 20000 Dubrovnik, Croatia). CAAS is located in the very heart of Dubrovnik, less then five-minute walk from the Old City. Accommodation for keynote speakers and limited number of participants is reserved at CAAS residence for the period 11–14 of May 2017.Organizers will cover accommodation costs only for the invited keynote speakers. Web site of CAAS: http://www.caas.unizg.hr/accomodation.html
All participants are kindly asked to take necessary steps for their travel arrangements soon after their participation is confirmed by the Organizing Committee. The Dubrovnik Airport has good connections (direct or indirect) with all main European airports.