Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Berlin Institute for Empirical Integration and Migration Research (BIM)

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin | BIM | Departments | Foundations of Migration and Integration Research

Foundations of Migration and Integration Research




Reflection of terms and concepts of migration research

The focus of the department is on the theoretical-conceptual and empirical-methodological basic questions of integration and migration research, which result from the interdisciplinary research work in BIM.

In this respect, the department discusses conceptual, conceptual and methodological issues with the other areas of BIM, advises them on research designs and evaluations, and develops new questions of migration research by continuously reflecting on concepts and research results from all areas.

This also raises fundamental questions about the viability of categories such as migration background and common concepts such as integration, inclusion or diversity.

Operationalization of theoretical concepts for migration research


A central research contribution of the department lies in the empirical operationalization of theoretical-conceptual terms such as integration, migrant or discrimination.

Exemplary questions are:

  • Do the common demarcations of migrants via e.g. the country of birth coincide with the self-perception of persons or the external perception of the majority society?
  • What do those affected experience as discriminatory and how does discrimination develop empirically in the Federal Republic of Germany?

  • How can institutional obstacles, which often stand in the way of the implementation of intercultural openings, be empirically researched?

Quantitative and qualitative data collection in the migration society


The department accompanies the research work in the BIM especially also in basic questions concerning the collection of primary data, the collection, documentation and the provision of the data sources to researchers as well as guest scientists of the institute.

In the context of promoting young researchers, the department supports conceptually and empirically oriented seminars in university teaching and offers advice on empirically oriented qualification work.

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