Winter Lecture 2 - The ‘desirable’ migrant and the race politics of immigration Event as iCalendar

09 August 2017

1 - 2pm

Venue: Conference Centre Lecture Theatre

Location: Room 423-342, Symonds Street entrance level, 22 Symonds Street

Host: School of Environment

Cost: Free

Speaker: Dr Rachel Simon-Kumar, School of Population Health, University of Auckland

For the last thirty years, New Zealand’s immigration policy has been caught between two opposing claims – officially, the policy is projected as an objective tool of economics that invites suitably skilled migrants regardless of their country of origin. To its critics, however, the policy is not immune to racism and tacitly encourages ‘desirable’ migrants from European backgrounds, erecting greater obstacles for ‘undesirable’ migrants from Asia. Neutral or racist? Reactionary or objective? What are the underlying values of immigration policy and how has it shaped New Zealand’s population mobilities?

This lecture, simultaneously a survey of recent migration history as well as socio-political analyses, uses ‘desirability’ as a window to explore the contemporary race politics of economic migration. It traces a dynamic relationship between race and economics over the last three decades arguing that while they have been in opposition in the past, it is the emerging collusion between the two that importantly reveals a new era of demographic and political transformation in New Zealand.


The Winter Lecture series:

This lecture is the second in a series of six lectures on consecutive Wednesdays - Nation Transformed: the place of migration in 21st century Aotearoa-New Zealand

Contact: Dr Francis Collins or Dr Ward Friesen

Nation Transformed: the place of migration in 21st century Aotearoa-New Zealand. Background image is a cityscape of Auckland, looking out towards the harbor. It spans from Herne Bay on the left to the Sky Tower on the right. The motorway interchange with streaks of car lights, and adjacent walkway is in foreground, towards the right.