Public Views of Immigration and Diversity: Causes and Consequences for Policy

On May 17-18, 2022, in cooperation with the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, Ottawa office, the Centre for Migration Studies organized the workshop Public Views of Immigration and Diversity. This international symposium brought together leading scholars of public opinion with policy practitioners to share and discuss cutting-edge work analyzing what people in modern, immigrant-receiving countries think about immigrants and immigration, why they think it, and how knowing the answers to these questions shapes the policy-making process. Research presentations focused on immigration attitudes in Canada, Europe, and the United States. In addition to discussing their latest research, workshop participants reflected on how their work sheds light on broader relationships between researchers, media, the punditocracy, and the political class.

For elected officials, making immigration policies can be a politically risky undertaking. Questions about immigration – how many should be allowed to come, who should be allowed to come, and on what terms – cut to the core of what political communities are about. In democratic societies, political elites mobilize public sentiment to gain office, and they depend on public support to stay there and, ultimately, make policy.


Matthew Wright | Political Science;  Associate Professor, University of British Columbia
Antje Ellermann | Political Science; Director, UBC Centre for Migration Studies

Interested in what happened at the Public Views of Immigration and Diversity? Check out our gallery and videos from the event below!