Belonging in the land down under: Black Africans in Australia

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Black African migrants have recently become a visible presence in Australia. Many arrived through the humanitarian resettlement programme, but far greater numbers come through the “skilled stream”. This paper explores recent research into these populations to tease out how material, social and existential elements of settlement intersect with belonging. As a heuristic, it uses Ager and Strang's ten markers and means of integration: material aspects (employment, housing, education and health); social connections internally and externally; facilitators (language, cultural knowledge, safety, stability); and rights and citizenship. A range of challenges to positive settlement and integration are identified, using these domains. However, Australian research has focused almost exclusively on African migrants of refugee background, with most sampling South Sudanese, making generalization impossible, even dangerous. The urgent need for research using wider samples, and more large-scale quantitative work, is called for and a range of policy recommendations suggested.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Migration
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 3 May 2021


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