Call for Papers: Migrant inclusion in small and medium-sized Canadian towns and rural areas

The inclusion of immigrants is a perennial theme in the sociological literature from Töennies’ early theorizations on gemeinschaft and gesellschaft to Park and Burgess’ assimilation theory to Bauböck’s reflections on transnationalism.  This is likely because the sociological analysis of inclusion invites reflection not only on local community membership dynamics but also the complex processes underlying the construction of the nation-state and nationalism, policy enactment and deployment, as well as the interaction of individual/group identity formation with these processes. Although the existing literature is certainly rich, it tends to focus overwhelmingly on large urban centres, overlooking the complex and unique social processes that occur in small and medium-sized towns and rural centres.

Kathryn Barber and Willem Maas (Department of Political Science, Glendon College, York University) seek original theoretical or empirical contributions from sociological and other social science researchers (graduate students, early career researchers, or established faculty) working on migrant inclusion (past or present) in small and medium-sized towns and rural areas in Canada. In particular, we welcome:

  1. Theoretical contributions that theorize the unique dynamics of the inclusion process in small and medium-sized towns and rural centres
  2. Empirical case studies of specific towns or rural areas or diasporic communities in Canada
  3. Analyses of municipal, regional, provincial, or national policies promoting inclusion (particularly those that focus on Canadian multiculturalism, Quebec interculturalism, or indigenous self-governance models) and their interplay with local community formation

Abstracts demonstrating potential will be asked to contribute to a special issue of an academic journal, virtual workshop series, and an international conference on immigrant inclusion in small and medium-sized towns and rural centres. If you are interested in participating, please send an abstract of maximum 500 words by December 15, 2022 to Kathryn Barber (

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