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Master Thesis

Social Justice and ethnic diverse population : contribution of local policies in Leipzig, Germany

Abstract : Cities and countries are increasingly becoming more ethnic diverse. In the European context there have been several waves of immigration since the end of the Second World War. From guest-workers invited to work at the economic development of Europe in the 1960’s and on until new fluxes of immigration nowadays, national policies have also been transforming accordingly. Policies went from being assimilationist to multiculturalist and now they are again in transformation. However, despite most laws concerning immigration and integration being national, cities and neighborhoods are the places in which newcomers influence the most. Moreover, immigrants are a diverse group and will settle under different socioeconomic conditions. While some immigrants are able to achieve more easily the same standards of the host society, others are more likely to live in deprivation. Thus, claims for greater social justice are raised. Following the Young’s (1990) concept of social justice, in this thesis I propose to analyze whether local and national policies concerning immigration and integration are able to promote social justice for the ethnic diverse population. In order to answer this question, the case of neighborhoods of Neustadt- Neuschönefeld and Volkmarsdorf in Leipzig were chosen. This area concentrates high proportions of immigrant population and at the same time it is one the most deprived areas in Leipzig. Thus, most immigrants that are located in this area are living in more vulnerable situations. Three local policies were analyzed to better understand how the municipality approaches such situation. The four documents are: “Overall concept for immigrant integration”, the “Integrated Development Concept for Leipzig”, the “Integrated Development Concept for the district of Leipzig-East” and finally the “Municipal overall strategy for democracy and diversity”. Moreover, to understand how those policies are put into practice, investments done in this area were also brought up. Three main conclusions were drawn in this respect. The first concerns the importance of the local context that shapes relations between locals and immigrants and that can limit the response of the municipality when tackling such subject. The second result concerned a possible mismatch between the reality and the policies, given that most policies were developed in a top-down approach and the few indicators in which the policies were built. Lastly, it concerns the incompatibility of assimilationist policies and social justice.
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Master Thesis
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  • HAL Id : dumas-01269682, version 1

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Paula Leite Cassas. Social Justice and ethnic diverse population : contribution of local policies in Leipzig, Germany. Humanities and Social Sciences. 2015. ⟨dumas-01269682⟩

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