Migration routes and strategies of young undocumented migrants in England: A qualitative perspective

Alice Bloch*, Nando Sigona, Roger Zetter

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Citations (Scopus)


Based on data from in-depth qualitative interviews with young undocumented migrants from Brazil, China, Ukraine, Zimbabwe and Kurds from Turkey, this article explores the entry strategies used by young people in relation to the UK immigration system and their undocumented status. Against a brief account of Britain's regime, the paper first examines why and how these migrants come to the UK and the ways in which they entered the country. Second, the paper explores strategies in relation to immigration status and considers: the use of different immigration statuses; the role of the asylum system in their strategies including as an attempt to regularize status or as a route to becoming undocumented when refused asylum. Finally, the paper examines the extent to which these young migrants have agency in their efforts to negotiate the complex and exclusionary immigration and asylum regime.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1286-1302
Number of pages17
JournalEthnic and Racial Studies
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2011


  • Asylum
  • Irregular immigration
  • Migration routes
  • Migration strategies
  • UK
  • Youth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Sociology and Political Science


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