Children of refugees in Europe: Aspirations, social and economic lives, identity and transnational linkages

What are the life trajectories of children of refugees born in Europe in terms of cultural and social identity and what are their educational and employment experiences?


These last decades, Europe has seen the population of migrant minorities augmenting considerably and producing great ethnical, cultural and religious diversity. However, despite the fact that much research has been carried out on different issues related to all aspects of these migrants’ lives, their children have so far been neglected. Consequently, little is known about how they fare within the broader analyses of ethnicity and what their social, economic, cultural and transnational lives are like.

This research aims at providing an insight in the life of refugees’ children, their aspirations, their experiences, their insertion in the labour market and their acquisition of skills, taking into account their refugee background and the fact that there exist different trajectories according to the environment in which they are integrated. The research will be carried out in three countries – Switzerland, France and the United Kingdom – and involve European born adult children of refugees from Vietnam, Sri Lanka and Turkey.


  • Refugee
  • Identity
  • Social and economic integration
  • Belonging
  • Transnational linkages
  • Social cohesion
  • Second-generation


  • Anthropology
  • Political Science
  • Sociology


Non Governmental Organisations:

  • Centre d’action social protestant Paris
  • Evelyn Oldfield Unit London
  • Caritas Genève
  • Bureau de l’intégration des étrangers

Relevant Countries

  • France
  • Sri Lanka
  • Switzerland
  • Turkey
  • United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • Vietnam


This project, started in 2013, has been completed.

Contact the project team

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Research team

Milena Chimienti
Haute Ecole Spécialisée de Suisse Occidentale

Laurence Ossipow
Haute Ecole Spécialisée de Suisse Occidentale

Aline Bloch
Principal Member
The University of Manchester

Catherine Wihtol de Wenden
Principal Member