Posted: 4 Aug 2022
Date Written: July 1, 2022
We call for incorporating organizations into migration scholarship, and for considering immigrants in organizational research. By centering immigrant organizations (IOs) as a unit of analysis, migration scholars can reconsider whether and how IOs affect well-being, integration, political voice, identities, globalization, and development. Migration scholars must learn from scholars of organizations, but organization scholars must in turn question assumptions of nativity and citizenship in their research. Doing so illuminates the unique challenges—and, at times, opportunities—faced by IOs, especially regarding inequities tied to legal status and stigmatization. We further argue that cross-national and transnational analyses of IOs help unpack organizational embeddedness—that is, the ways in which contexts at the local, national, binational, and geopolitical levels generate opportunities and constraints. Studying IOs raises critical questions of civic inequality and organizational stigma but also highlights IOs’ potential to give voice to and effect positive change for migrant communities.
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