Whole-COMM’s policy brief “A differentiated approach for small and medium-sized cities?” highlights the importance of differentiating integration policies between large cities, small and medium-sized towns, and rural areas to ensure a successful social cohesion among the local population and newcomers.
The recent war in Ukraine and increased influx of people seeking refuge make it urgent to create more even and equal standards for providing integration support and seizing the opportunities that immigrants bring in small and medium-sized towns and rural areas. Although European institutions have long supported the local level in dealing with immigrant integration, EU policymaking on this issue is largely informed by the realities of large cities and capitals, while small and medium-sized towns and rural areas have limited direct use of European funds and other support.
The policy brief calls on EU institutions and policymakers to finetune existing immigrant integration policy frameworks to include the needs, opportunities, and realities of small and medium-sized towns and rural areas. The Whole-COMM project emphasizes the importance of closing the gap between European and small locality policymaking on immigrant integration to ensure consistency and predictability in integration services and support and to create equal life chances for asylum seekers and refugees across Europe.
Maria Schiller, Peter Scholten, and Elina Jonitz authored the policy brief “A differentiated approach for small and medium-sized cities?” as part of the Whole-COMM project’s efforts to improve migrant integration policies and practices in small and medium-sized towns and rural areas.