From 14 December 2016 09:00 to 16 December 2016 18:00

Sandra Ponzanesi and Koen Leurs organise KNAW Academy Colloquium

‘Connected migrants: encapsulation or cosmopolitanism?’


The KNAW (The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences) has granted funding to Prof. Sandra Ponzanesi and Dr Koen Leurs. The postcolonial and gender scholars have received 16,500 euros to organise a two-day seminar with 16 experts from different fields and a one-day masterclass for PhD and Master's students.

Encapsulation and cosmopolitanism

In our contemporary world, migrants should be considered as 'connected migrants'. More than ever before, migrants can chose between different technologies to be in contact with loved ones living in their country of origin. This colloquium will innovatively address how digital practices of migrants revolves around the dialectic of 'encapsulation' and 'cosmopolitanism'.

Previously, scholars singled out one or another of these processes. 'Homophily', the assumption that 'birds of a feather flock together', is popular among those who argue that transnational communication hinders integration and leads to segregation and radicalisation. Scholars however also contend that migrants can be present in both their host society and their homeland .

Seen this way, migrants can connect with 'co‐ethnics', forming bonding capital and developing bridging, cosmopolitan capital by connecting with their host society. Although contested, cosmopolitanism is indispensable as a 'grounded category' to capture everyday reflexive imaginations of openness between self, other and world among elite and subaltern subjects.

This colloquium innovatively brings experts in the field together to acknowledge how boundary making and cosmopolitanisation operate simultaneously and grasps social, cultural and political implications of migrant digital practices as grounded in everyday practices.


The programme will be divided into thematic sessions focusing on identity, rights, learning, political economy, radicalisation and surveillance, and other topics. See all speakers at the KNAW Academy Colloquia website.

Prior to the Academy Colloquium a one-day master class (14 December 2016) will be organised, intended for PhD students, post-docs and early-career researchers from the Netherlands and abroad.

Public lecture by Zygmunt Bauman
Prof. Zygmunt Bauman
Prof. Zygmunt Bauman

The programme will be closed with a public lecture by one of the world's most eminent social theorists Prof. Zygmunt Bauman on 16 December, entitled: 'Between separation and integration: Strategies of cohabitation in the era of diasporization and Internet'. Read more about the lecture.

KNAW Academy Colloquia

Academy Colloquia are small-scale conferences, which bring together a select international group of researchers to discuss a topical theme. The Academy assists the colloquium organisers with organisational and administrative matters.

Start date and time
14 December 2016 09:00
End date and time
16 December 2016 18:00