INSIDE the Deportation Gap – Social Membership for Non-Deported Persons

Team: Sieglinde Rosenberger, Ilker Ataç, Theresa Schütze, Victoria Reitter, Sabine Koppes


The project "Inside the Deportation Gap – Social Membership for Non-Deported Persons" investigates access to social services (housing/allowances, health care and education) of persons who have a deportation order yet who for various reasons cannot get removed. The main focus of the research is on the production of social membership of marginalized people. The case-studies concern regulations and practices in Austria, the Netherlands and Sweden.

The group is heterogeneous in terms of legal status and, thus, highly diverse with regard to individuals’ access to basic rights and services within and across countries. While some people are temporarily granted residency title, others are merely tolerated and yet others are left without any documentation. We choose an extended policy approach, assuming social membership to be produced both at the political level (legal measures) as well as through everyday practices.

The main research goals are: generating knowledge on the making and outcome of social membership; explaining differences in legal and policy responses to temporarily non-removed migrants across nation states, sub-national entitites, and social policy areas (housing, allowances, basic education, health); providing social scientists with adequate data on the group of non-removed persons and reflecting theoretically on the gap between liberal (human) rights provisions and nation-state policies.


Project duration: January 2015 - November 2018

The comparative research Project "Inside the Deportation Gap. Social Membership for Non-Deported Persons" is supported by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) under grant agreement number P 27128-G11.

Upcoming Activities & Events

  • Migrationssymposium des Österreichischen Roten Kreuzes, Workshop zum Thema "Irreguläre Migration" mit Sieglinde Rosenberger und Ilker Ataç 12.-13. Juni 2018 (Info)
  • IMISCOE: Ilker Ataç, Viktoria Reitter, Theresa Schütze Präsentation des Artikels "Municipal governments' policies versus national exclusion: the case of non-deported persons" auf der 15th IMISCOE Annual Conference "Europe, Migrations and the Mediterranean: human mobilities and intercultural challenges" in Barcelona, 2.-4. Juli 2018
  • Netzwerk Flüchtlingsforschung: Panel von Ilker Ataç und Sieglinde Rosenberger "At the margins of the welfare state: asylum seekers, refugees and non-removed persons at the intersection of welfare and migration control" auf der 2. Konferenz des Netzwerk Flüchtlingsforschung (NWFF) in Eichstätt, 4.-6. Oktober 2018. Im Panel präsentieren Ilker Ataç, Sieglinde Rosenberger, Theresa Schütze ein paper mit dem Titel “The punitive turn in policies for non-removed rejected asylum seekers: National responses in Austria after 2015”

Activities & Events

  • ÖGfE Policy Brief: Nicht-Abschiebbarkeit, Soziale Rechte im Deportation Gap (Link)
  • Ilker Atac at the Think and Drink Colloquium: Inside the Deportation Gap; Montag 20.06.17, 18:00-21:00 Uhr; HU Berlin, Institut für Sozialwissenschaften, Universitätsstraße 3b
  • International Workshop with Arjen Leerkes (Erasmus University Rotterdam, Netherlands) and Anna Lundberg (Malmö University, Sweden), June 8th, 2017.
  • Participation at the 5th Berlin Summer School “Linking Theory and Empirical Research” taking place from July 19th to August 1st, 2015, organized by the WZB (Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin für Sozialforschung).
  • IPW-lecture & INEX-talk with Jeroen Doomernik (University of Amsterdam) at the Institute for Political Science (Vienna University) on October 12th, 18:30.


  • Rosenberger, Sieglinde / Koppes, Sabine (2018). Claiming control: cooperation with return as a condition for social benefits in Austria and the Netherlands. Comparative Migration Studies, DOI: 10.1186/s40878-018-0085-3.
  • Rosenberger, Sieglinde / Küffner, Carla (2016): After the Deportation Gap: Non-Removed Persons and their Pathways to Social Rights, in: Hsu, Roland / Reinprecht, Christoph (eds.): Migration and Integration, Vienna University Press, p.137-152. (Download)
  • Ataç, Ilker / Rosenberger, Sieglinde (2013): Inklusion/Exklusion - ein relationales Konzept der Migrationsforschung, in: Ilker Ataç / Sieglinde Rosenberger (Hg.): Politik der Inklusion und Exklusion, Göttingen: V&R unipress, 35-52. (Dowload)
  • Rosenberger, Sieglinde / Trauner, Florian (2014): "Abschiebepolitik: Eine sozialwissenschaftliche Annäherung" In: ÖZP 2/2014 (Editorial) (Download)
  • Welz, Judith / Winkler, Jakob (2014): "Abschiebepolitik im Spannungsfeld des liberal-demokratischen Paradoxons: Ermessensspielräume in asylrechtlichen Ausweisungsentscheidungen" In: ÖZP 2/2014 (Download)

14th IMISCOE Conference Rotterdam, June 28-30 2017

Panel with the title "Inside the Deportation Gap: Social Membership for Non-Removed Migrants" - organized by Ataç & Rosenberger

  • Ilker Ataç / Sieglinde Rosenberger, Department of Political Science, University of Vienna: Social Welfare or Control: Modes of decision-making on access to social services of non-removed migrants
  • Anda Barak-Bianco / Rebeca Raijman, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, University of Haifa, Israel: Daily lives of Sudanese asylum seekers in Israel in shade of 'liminal-legality'
  •  Tobias Eule, Lisa Marie Borrelli, Annika Lindberg and Anna Wyss, University of Bern: The Rejected and the Time Thieves: Irregularised Migrants in Permanent Temporariness
  •  Reinhard Schweitzer, Department of Geography, University of Sussex, Brighton, UK: Public service providers and immigration enforcement in London and Barcelona: Negotiating the effective limits of entitlement, access, necessity and internalised control
  •  Stacey Wilson-Forsberg, Wilfrid Laurier University, Brantford Ontario, Canada: Claiming The Right to be Present: Serving Migrants with Precarious Legal Status in the Sanctuary City of Hamilton, Ontario Canada