The group “asylum” was the first sub-group created by association members. The working group on asylum aims at addressing questions related to the widely debated topic of asylum and forced migration, in Switzerland and elsewhere. Generally speaking, we seek to encourage interested members to exchange information on scientific content, events and calls as well as ideas of research project. So far, the group has been focusing on the notion of “asylum abuse” and how it influences perceptions, structures, norms and actors.
Activities and outputs:
The work of the group "asylum" has resulted in the edited volume «Asile et abus – regards pluridisciplinaire sur un discours dominant » pubslihed by Seismo in 2020. The book discusses the discourse around abuse in the asylum system which has been polarizing the public opinion in Switzerland for over three decades. This politicization of asylum was notably reflected by a «legislative frenzy» – as the Asylum Act has been subject to constant revision – that has led to the introduction of policy measures to prevent, deter, limit the stay of and manage the settlement of asylum seekers and refugees. Among various discourses legitimizing such a normative inflation, the «fight against asylum abuse» has become a sort of mantra, preceding every political declaration regarding this topic, and has been able to create a large consensus among policy-makers. Despite its omnipresence in the political and media debate, the discourse on the notion of abuse in the field of asylum has, astonishingly, never been subject of deeper scientific scrutiny. The edited volume based on a multidisciplinary and multisite approach published in 2020 aims at filling this gap. A comparative perspective with an international outlook shall enable a global analysis of the question.
Nula Frei / Teresia Gordzielik / Clément de Senarclens / Anne-Cécile Leyvraz / Robin Stünzi, La lutte contre les abus dans le domaine de l’asile : émergence et développement d’un discours structurant le droit d’asile suisse, in: Jusletter of 17 March 2014 (French).