Interrogating time and temporality in migration governance

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Colleges, School and Institutes


An appreciation of time – such as temporal flows, stoppages, tenses, practices and tensions – offers new insights into understanding immigration experiences and governance. Time imbues people’s subjectivities, journeys and strategies of moving. It is also written (implicitly and explicitly) into the bureaucracies, administrative categories, legislation, decision-making and power of immigration systems. This chapter surveys the new – and rapidly diversifying – scholarship that explores migration through a temporal lens. It identifies five key emerging areas: rhythms; speeds and stasis; (im)permanence; the past, present and future; and temporal synchronicity and disjuncture. Drawing on examples across countries and immigration types, the chapter suggests that analysis of the uses, conceptualisations, regulation and experiences of time by institutions and individuals offer fresh insights into the ways power and the state are designed, operationalised and negotiated in migration politics.


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook on the Governance and Politics of Migration
EditorsEmma Carmel, Katharina Lenner, Regine Paul
Publication statusPublished - 27 Apr 2021

Publication series

NameElgar Handbooks in Migration


  • Migration, time, temporality, asylum, refugee, Irregular immigration, waiting