IOE - Faculty of Education and Society


A school in Madagascar by Milijaona Randrianarivelojisoa


Education, migration and (im)mobility

Migration and (im)mobility influence education in complex ways yet are often the hidden dimensions of the education-development nexus.

Coordinators: Dr Elaine Chase and Dr Amy North

Contemporary societies shape and are shaped by the migration and (im)mobility of people, ideas, resources and different forms of capital. Such movements simultaneously generate opportunities and challenges for education infrastructures, learners and educationalists in low and middle-income countries.

Our research and teaching focus on the experiences of migration and (im)mobility implications for education policy and practice, and how better to understand the education-migration nexus within the context of international development.

Our work broadly explores the following questions:

  • What new considerations for education and international development arise when we apply a migration or mobility lens? 
  • What opportunities and challenges do migration and (im)mobility create for education in the context of international development? 
  • What are the implications of migration or mobility processes for education policy, systems, curricula, pedagogy, training, and learner experiences?
  • What approaches are most likely to promote justice and equity in education in the context of migration and (im)mobility?


Research projects (current and recently completed) 

  • The LOHST (Lives on Hold our Stories Told) Project:  Assessing the impact of Covid-19 on young unaccompanied asylum-seekers’ legal advice, representation and decision-making (ESRC-Funded) - interdisciplinary research exploring the legal and welfare effects of COVID-19 on unaccompanied asylum seekers aged 16-25 and on the work of legal and social care practitioners. Elaine Chase (Co-Investigator) with colleagues at Liverpool University Faculty of Law and the University of Southampton
  • Connecting During Covid -19: Practices of care, remittance sending  and digitization among UK migrant communities (ESRC-Funded) - research exploring how COVID-19 has impacted care and remittance practices amongst Somali, Brazilian and Indian migrant communities in the UK. Elaine Chase (Co-Investigator) with colleagues at Queen Mary University London and SOAS.
  • London International Development Centre: Migration Leadership Team (LIDC-MLT) (ESRC/AHRC funded) developing a co-designed global strategic agenda for migration research. Elaine Chase (Co-Investigator) with colleagues from SOAS and Queen Mary University of London
  • RELIEF II:  Refugees, Education, Learning, Information Technology, and Entrepreneurship for the Future (ESRC-funded and based within UCL Institute for Global Prosperity) - the centre investigates the meaning of inclusive growth and prosperity in Lebanon, a context of mass displacement. Co-Investigators: Elaine Chase, Tejendra Pherali and Mai Abu Moghli
  • Becoming Adult (ESRC-funded) - exploring the wellbeing outcomes of unaccompanied migrant young people turning 18 in the UK and Italy. Elaine Chase (Principal Investigator) with colleagues from the University of Birmingham and the University of Oxford
  • Pathways to Education and We are Movers - a course exploring education pathways for migrant and refugee women in London, and series of participatory, arts-based conversations bringing together academic research and lived experiences of migration. Amy North, with colleagues and students from across UCL and women from the Helen Bamber Foundation and Lewisham Refugee and Migrant Network
  • More than Knowledge Transfer - investigated the personal and professional trajectories of alumni from education and international development MA programmes, including their experiences of (im)mobility, and the extent to which they were able to draw on their postgraduate studies to support the well-being of others. Amy North (Principal Investigator), Chris Yates (Researcher), Ian Warwick (Researcher), Elaine Chase (Researcher) and Rosie Westerveld (Researcher)
  • Migrant women, learning and digital literacies post-Covid era: exploratory seed-funded research exploring the implications of shifting approaches to learning, including online and digital learning, digital literacies in relation to the experiences of migrant women in the post Covid-19 context. Amy North (Principal Investigator)