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Recent publications on citizenship laws and policies


Democratic Citizenship and Denationalization

By Patti Tamara Lenard, American Political Science Review, 2017

Are democratic states permitted to denationalize citizens, in particular those whom they believe pose dangers to the physical safety of others? In this article, I argue that they are not. The power to denationalize citizens—that is, to revoke citizenship—is one that many states have historically claimed for themselves, but which has largely been in disuse in the last several decades. Recent terrorist events have, however, prompted scholars and political actors to reconsider the role that denationalization can and perhaps should play in democratic states, in particular with respect to its role in protecting national security and in supporting the global fight against terror more generally. In this article, my objective is to show that denationalization laws have no place in democratic states. To understand why, I propose examining the foundations of the right of citizenship, which lie, I shall argue, in the very strong interests that individuals have in security of residence. I use this formulation of the right to respond to two broad clusters of arguments: (1) those that claim that it is justifiable to denationalize citizens who threaten to undermine the safety of citizens in a democratic state or the ability of a democratic state to function as a democratic state, and (2) those that claim that it is justifiable to denationalize dual citizens because they possess citizenship status in a second country that is also able to protect their rights.

Details at the journal’s website.


Voting here and there: political integration and transnational political engagement among immigrants in Europe

By Ali R. Chaudhary, Global Networks, 2017

In this article, I examine voting patterns in origin and receiving country national elections among immigrants in Europe. The existing scholarship on transnational political engagement offers two competing interpretations of the relationship between immigrant integration and transnational engagement, which I classify as the resocialization and complementarity perspectives. The resocialization perspective assumes that transnational political engagement gradually declines as immigrants become socialized into the new receiving society. Conversely, the complementarity perspective assumes that immigrant integration increases transnational political engagement. I test these competing perspectives with survey data collected between 2004 and 2008 for 12 different immigrant groups residing in seven European cities. The analysis examines how immigrant political and civic participation in receiving countries affect their proclivities to vote in homeland elections. I also analyse the effects of receiving and origin country contexts on immigrant voting behaviour in homeland elections. While my findings support both the resocialization and complementarity perspectives, they also highlight the ways in which a set of origin-country contexts shape immigrant propensities to engage in transnational electoral politics. I observe a degree of complementarity among immigrants with resources who are motivated and eligible to participate in both receiving and origin-country elections.

Access at the journal’s website.


Citizenship and Free Movement in a Changing EU: Navigating an Archipelago of Contradictions

By Jo Shaw, University of Edinburgh School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper Series, 2017

This paper considers the implications - in relation to legal status of EU citizens and their families (and UK citizens resident in other Member States) - of the UK’s referendum of 23 June 2016, which resulted in a vote to leave the EU. The focus is on the types of solutions that are being explored by the UK and EU in the context of the withdrawal negotiations under Article 50 TEU to deal with the acquired rights of individuals and families. It also touches upon the consequences in terms of national citizenship, as well as EU free movement law, that may arise if the Member States explore creative solutions to an unprecedented situation.

A shorter version of this paper will appear in Martill, B. and Staiger, U. (eds.) Brexit and Beyond: Rethinking the Future(s) of Europe, London: UCL Press, 2018, Forthcoming

Access at SSRN.


Empirical Assessment of the Quality of Nationalities: The Quality of Nationality Index (QNI)

By Dimitry Kochenov and Justin Lindeboom, European Journal of Comparative Law and Governance, 2017

Contemporary thinking about nationality is surrounded by three persistent mythologies. First, all nationalities are equal. Second, there is a direct correlation between the power and size of the economy of a country and the quality of its nationality. Third, there is a correlation between the geographical scope of the rights granted by a nationality and the territory of the conferring state. Looking beyond the subjective feelings one may have towards one’s nationality, the widely diverging quality of nationalities can in fact be measured. In the Quality of Nationality Index (QNI), which this article introduces and discusses, an attempt has been made to develop and deploy a reliable and straightforward methodology to measure objectively the value of having a particular nationality, which would not be perception-based. QNI is used to refute all the three mythologies above as unhelpful and misleading. Nationalities very far from equal, as least not under the assumption that the level of expected welfare, education, healthcare, life chances, and global travel and settlement opportunities matter.

Pre-print at SSRN.


Participation in Local Elections: ‘Why Don’t Immigrants Vote More?’

By Didier Ruedin, Parliamentary Affairs, 2017

Why do immigrants vote less in local elections when they have the right to vote? I present a new representative survey on participation in the 2015 municipal elections in the Canton of Geneva, Switzerland, and predict electoral participation with logistic regression models. Most immigrant groups vote less than the majority population. Four explanations are tested for this difference: social origin (resources), political engagement, civic integration and networks, as well as socialisation. Individually, all these explanations are associated with differences in electoral participation, but contrary to some recent studies, substantive differences between nationalities remain.

Read at the journal’s website.