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IMISCOE conference goes online

13 June 2020

Photo of laptop screen displaying online meeting attendees

The Open University is playing a key role in the first-ever virtual conference to be held by IMISCOE (International Migration, Integration and Social Cohesion in Europe), Europe's largest network of scholars in the area of migration and integration.

Under the leadership of Parvati Raghuram, Professor of Geography and Migration, and Dr Gunjan Sondhi, Lecturer in Geography, the OU is co-hosting the online event with a University of Luxembourg team. The University of Luxembourg were the original hosts of the in-person conference scheduled for July 2020. 

Drawing on the OU’s extensive experience of online teaching and learning, the IMISCOE online conference now boasts an augmented programme that reflects changing needs. 

All the panels, papers and workshops already accepted for presentation at the face-to-face conference will go ahead, but the plenary topic will now be Mobilities and Immobilities in Pandemic Times.

In addition to the OU’s organisational team leads, OU students and academics will also participate in the conference. 

OU postgraduates go free

Through IMISCOE’s postgraduate networks and initiatives, OU postgraduate students will be able to attend the conference for free.

And they will receive training and experience in how to manage online conference rooms on the virtual meetings platform Webex.

The OU is hosting two additional sessions showcasing the innovative work of OU academics.  

Dr Kesi Mahendran will facilitate  participatory workshop on techniques for teaching migration studies online, and Professor Umut Erel will lead a session on how to collaborate with the arts to challenge polarized migration debates. 

BAME women at forefront

OU academics and postgraduate students are working very hard to ensure that the conference takes place seamlessly. Dr Sondhi points out that ‘BAME women lead the migration scholarship at the OU’.

“They are at the forefront of innovative and politically engaging research.”

Professor Raghuram adds: “This is a great opportunity to showcase OU research on migration internationally, and situate us centrally in European debates.”

The next face-to-face annual IMISCOE conference will now take place at the University of Luxembourg on 7-9 July 2021, on the theme of ‘crossing borders, connecting cultures’.

For more information and to register for the virtual IMISCOE conference on 1-2 July 2020, go the conference webpage. Registration closes 20 June.

Photo by Chris Montgomery on Unsplash

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