IRiS is at the forefront of research into a number of the most pressing issues facing society at a local, national and global level. Our work focusses on a number of key themes including citizenship, language, belonging, the economic impacts of diversity, access to welfare, social cohesion and integration utilising the lens of superdiversity to develop new theoretical and methodological approaches to aid our understanding of social life in an era of enhanced mobilities and diversities. Research generated by IRiS has promoted understanding of the ongoing migration crisis and the physical, emotional and legal journey undertaken by refugees and asylum seekers. We focus not only on the academic, building new theory and methodology, but also on the social, meeting those affected face to face to understand their challenges and connect the theoretical to the personal. Our academics and partners from around the world have led, and continue to lead on a series of high profile research projects that are helping to shape our understanding and influence policy around migration and other interrelated areas of superdiversity.

'Researching the Crisis: IRiS work on the EU's handling of refugees and migrants

crisis-bookletThe EU's current struggle to find a sustainable and humane response to the refugee crisis at its borders is, among other things, a fascinating laboratory for researchers in this area. The crisis has highlighted the fragility of the so-called 'fortress Europe' and of the EU political project more broadly. But the arrival of thousands of refugees and migrants has not only strained the EU and the relationship between member states, it also brings renewal to Europe's ageing population and a new set of opportunities and challenges for European society as a whole.

The projects listed in this booklet offers a snapshot of IRiS' recent research on Europe's refugee and migration crisis and captures the spirit of the work we do which benefits from the combination of different disciplinary perspectives: academically rigorous, conceptually and methodologically innovative, forward looking and committed to supporting positive change by engaging with policy and practice.

Download 'Researching the crisis: IRiS work on the EU's handling of refugees and migrants' (PDF)

Recent and ongoing research projects:

UPWEB- The Welfare Bricolage Project is examining how residents in superdiverse communities have developed their own approach to healthcare through the combining of formal, informal and virtual services to address their needs.

TLANG- Translation and Translanguaging is uncovering new understanding of how people communicate multilingually across diverse languages and spaces.

Pathways of settlement among recent migrants in superdiverse contexts- Pathways is examining the ways in which new migrants negotiate the challenges of their new lives with a focus on migrants who arrive in the UK with no pre existing support networks in place.

Health Histories- This project has delivered key insights into how new migrants health seeking behaviours have developed and their interactions with the UK healthcare sector.

CAMP-BIVALENCE- Is analyising the role of civil society organisations in the exclusion of the Roma and Traveller communities in European urban camps.


See all IRiS's research projects


Our groundbreaking research is supported by a number of key partners who provide specialist knowldge and expertise across a number of superdiversity themes. We work with academic institutions, NGO's, Government departments, Third Sector Organisations and other public bodies including; 


Harvard University, University of Kansas, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, European University Institute,  New School, University of Adelaide, Migranter, University of Bergen, FIERI.