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Welfare and Migration Research Network (WelMi)

The Welfare and Migration Research Network (WelMi) is a network of PhD-students and early-career scholars within the NordWel-framework. WelMi is based on the idea that PhD-students and early-career scholars, who are researching topics related to immigration, integration, and the welfare state, can exchange ideas, plan and conduct joint activities, and benefit from each other’s expertise in interrelated research fields. The first WelMi network meeting was held in March 2010 in Odense /University of South Denmark.

WelMi’s first big public event, a 2-day conference entitled Inclusions and Exclusions – Crossing Borders of the Welfare State, took place 11-12 May 2011 at the University of Helsinki. On the first day of the event, a crowd of 60 enjoyed the keynote speeches by Prof. Rosemary Sales, Associate Prof. Peo Hansen, Prof. Anette Borchorst and Prof. Bo Bengtsson. The program for the public presentations can be found here: Seminar poster 11.5.

During the second day, the participating PhD-students received comments on their papers by the keynote speakers. WelMi also held a working meeting, and appointed Marjukka Weide (University of Southern Denmark/University of Helsinki) as coordinator, to replace Saara Pellander (University of Helsinki) had been coordinating WelMi between March 2010 and May 2011. During this meeting, the WelMi members decided to initiate a book project that would relate to the WelMi research interests.

The second WelMi event took place in Odense and was centered on the evolving WelMi book project. An open afternoon seminar was organized for 27 October under the title  Migration, Institutions and Welfare States – Negotiating Practices of Inclusion and Exclusion with Lecturer Magnus Dahlstedt (see presentation slides) and WelMi-network member Regine Paul as speakers. The seminar was followed by an internal publication workshop 28 October.

During the third WelMi event, which was an intensive seminar in Helsinki on 8 March 2012, chapter authors for the WelMi book received reviews from experts in their field.  We were very grateful for all of the invaluable feedback from the reviewers who provided written commentary, and we were especially pleased with the contributions of the reviewers that were able to attend the seminar: Sirpa Wrede, Johannes Kananen, Johanna Leinonen, Pasi Saukkonen and Rinus Penninx.  A meeting on the status and future of the WelMi network  took place the following day, 9 March, during which Elizabeth Onasch (Northwestern University) accepted the role of coordinator, and the steering group of previous coordinators (Heidi Vad Jønsson, Saara Pellander, Marjukka Weide) was formed.

The WelMi publication “Migrations and welfare states: Policies, discourses and institutions” came out in 2013.

WelMi coordinator: Elizabeth Onasch

Steering group: Heidi Vad Jønsson, Saara Pellander, Marjukka Weide, Mats Wickström

Contact: welmi-network(at)

Network members