EC/SO 340 - Globalized Economy and Migration

At the beginning of the 21st Century, the accelerated impact of a globalized economy on international migrations and vice versa gives rise to a number of questions: Has the globalization of the world’s economy forced millions of people to migrate? Do migrants move principally from developing countries to developed countries? Is migration a consequence of economic change, or do economic changes occur as a result of the millions of people who migrate? Does migration provoke changes only in the receiving society, or also in the sending society? What strategies are used in different countries to manage the arrival of new migrants?

As well as its economic impacts, migration results in social and political obstacles, as well as benefits, for both the host culture and the new immigrants, especially in relation to the worldviews (knowledge, values, and attitudes) that migrants carry with them. These new intercultural relations sometimes lead to tensions caused by language barriers, different customs and cultural practices and misunderstandings. Yet, these social changes also transform both the receiving and the sending societies in positive ways.

The course will guide students through a number of topics relating to migrations and the globalized economy at the supranational, national and local levels. On the one hand the origins of migrations (or why people migrate and how), on the other hand, the economic aspects of migrations. Finally, the political and cultural effects of migrations in both sending and receiving societies (or how migration changes social reality). The course will focus especially on Spain and Europe. Course-related trips in Barcelona will be used to illustrate the ways a host society integrates migrants.

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