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Migration Identity and Belonging in a Changing World
The International Studies Student Association (INSA) of the Department of International Studies at American University of Sharjah is proud to host its second annual INSA Conference. The conference aims to provide a collaborative platform for students from around the world to engage in an interdisciplinary dialogue essential to the understanding of global issues. This year the focus is global migration. We are especially interested in exploring the complex relations between migration, identities and inequalities in reconfiguring the current social, cultural and political context of the Middle East, North African and South Asian regions and beyond.
As a global phenomenon, migration has always been present, yet is now occurring at an accelerated pace, due to a greater desire or need for mobility. A variety of push and pull factors contribute to migration and can be categorized into several distinct types: economic, political, social and environmental. Migration can be either voluntary or involuntary, yet always involves semi-permanent or permanent movement of individuals both within states and between them. As a result, identity must now be conceptualized differently to take into account the plurality of societies, diasporic communities and transnational networks produced through migration. Therefore, questions of belonging arise for groups and individuals. An interdisciplinary approach offers a valuable and thorough analysis of the interrelated concepts of migration, identity and belonging.