Migrants and Citizens
Theresa May visits Al Madina Mosque

A citizen’s lament

From 5,000 miles away, I no longer recognize my country.  At first glance I thought the newspaper headlines were a joke: promises of forcing firms to publish “Foreign Workers’ Lists” too obviously fascist to be anything more than… Read More

US border with Mexico at San Diego

The Worst Invention Ever?

‘Borders are the worst invention ever made by politicians’. This was the claim made earlier this week by Jean-Claude Junker, the very President of the European Commission.  So is he right? And if so, having invented them, must we now live… Read More


Future-proofing: the state and refugee protection

  Refugee protection is broken. So what comes next? By now, a thousand Op Eds have called for bold and creative thinking in order to solve Syria’s refugee crisis – or rather to end Europe’s migration “crisis” (which… Read More

Screenshot 2015-07-29 20.03.28

Passports for a Price? BBC Radio 4 “Four Thought”

If you’ve not got time to read about migration, how about listening to this instead?  On this BBC Radio 4 podcast, first broadcast 29 July 2015, I talk about what it means when citizenship itself is for sale…. Read More

baby toes 2

Three Passports

  He is just six weeks old. The limits of his world extend to just a few feet beyond his crib. He still lives in a universe where objects you cannot see do not exist, where hands are… Read More

An Apology

 Saying sorry when you’re English is habitual.  But in the last year, I’ve found myself saying sorry more often than I used to. Saying sorry to my long-time Bulgarian friend (she with the M.Phil from Cambridge).  Saying sorry… Read More

A National Health Service? The Migrant Levy – and Why Citizens Should Care

Should foreigners pay to use the NHS? At first glance, it’s not so unreasonable. After all, as Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt points out, it’s a National Health Service. And as the Department of Health’s consultation paper, released today,… Read More

On Citizenship

What is citizenship for? That’s a question I’ve been asking for the last few years in an academicsetting: but it seemed more relevant than ever this week as I listened to commentators debate the logic of the Government’s… Read More

In which I remember becoming Canadian, and fail the UK Citizenship test…

What does it take to make a real citizen? For most of us, nothing at all. Our citizenship is arbitrarily assigned at birth by virtue of place or parentage. But immigrants have to earn their citizenship through naturalisation:… Read More

Israelis and Africans: the other refugee story

We all know the story of Israel and the Palestinian refugees. And certainly, even in this most politicized of conflicts, no one should dispute the continuing human suffering of the civilian Palestinian population. There should be shame that… Read More