- Public debate and policy-making on family migration in the Netherlands, 1960-1995
- Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies
- Volume | Issue number
- 41 | 9
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR)
Is ‘public opinion’ systematically opposed to immigration? And has this pushed policymakers to implement restrictive migration policies? To answer these questions, we investigate the impact of public opinion, as expressed in media debates, on the making of family migration policies in the Netherlands. Based on newspaper articles, parliamentary documents and ministerial archives, we analysed three debates on family migration from the 1960s, the 1980s and the 1990s, respectively. We identify how and why media coverage influenced administrative and political decision-making. Our findings contradict common assumptions in migration studies literature: media debates do not necessarily contribute to restrictive policy dynamics. As often as not, media debates supported liberal migration policy agendas. Furthermore, the impact of media on migration policy-making was smaller than often assumed.
- go to publisher's site
- In special issue: The public and the politics of immigration controls
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