The Nordic Asylum Law Seminar at the University of Iceland on 29 and 30 May 2017 (Coordinated by Odysseus Network member Erna Blöndal)

Seminar hosted by the University of Iceland Human Rights Institute and the Nordic Institute for Migration and Refugee Policy, in cooperation with the Icelandic Research Fund Centre of Excellence on Mobilities and Transnational Iceland, The Icelandic Ministry of Justice and the Finnish Section of the Nordic Federation of Public Administration (NAF)

Live streams of the plenary sessions and selected workshops, and further information are available by clicking here.

General information on the seminar:

A growing number of refugees and asylum seekers have fled to Europe to escape instability and persecution in countries such as Syria, Iraq, Eritrea and Somalia, and migration and asylum have become critical and hotly debated issues. Concerns related to security, territorial sovereignty and border control affect the response to the situation and there are alarming trends in the treatment of asylum seekers and refugees, as well as of irregular migrants in all parts of Europe. One aspect of this is the criminalisation of asylum seekers and refugees. However, fleeing persecution in an irregular manner is not a criminal act and irregular migrants also enjoy rights under international law, which need to be respected.

The overall theme of the 2017 Asylum Law Seminar is “Migration management and human rights – Refugee protection in crisis”. The chosen theme is to be interpreted broadly, but focus will be given to the situation in Europe and especially the Nordic countries.

The seminar will include speakers and participants from the Nordic countries as well as from other parts of the world; scholars, policy makers, politicians, judges, NGO representatives, state officials and other stakeholders. While the main focus of the seminar is on asylum law, we also seek papers from interdisciplinary perspectives from different fields such as migration studies, anthropology, sociology, political science and social work. The seminar consists of plenary sessions with renowned keynote speakers and workshops where papers submitted by scholars and other participants will be presented and discussed. Junior scholars are particularly encouraged to submit and present papers.

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