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Rebordering Britain & Britons after Brexit

About the project

Rebordering Britain and Britons after Brexit (MIGZEN) explores the long-term impacts of Brexit and Britain’s shifting position on the world stage on migration to and from the UK.

A collaborative research project involving academics, policy makers, civil society and migrant-led organisations it aims to produce new and timely knowledge on how the changing legal and political relationship between the UK and EU in consequence of Brexit shapes migration and migrant experience - including settlement, questions of identity, citizenship and belonging. It adopts a unique approach to understanding Britain’s migration story, that brings together emigration with immigration, and that considers British citizens, EU citizens and Third Country Nationals alongside one another.

Co-led by Professor Nando Sigona and Professor Michaela Benson, the project examines the following questions:

  • How, and in what ways, have volume, geography and direction of migration flows between the UK and EU changed since the Brexit Referendum? And how does this relate to global migrations to and from the UK?
  • In what ways do settled populations – British citizens resident in EU member states before Brexit and EU citizens living in the UK — assess their mobile and residential futures in light of their changing legal status, personal circumstances, political and economic crises, and the COVID-19 pandemic? How does this then inform, for example, decisions to stay put, to move on or repatriate?
  • How do transformations to migration governance regimes intervene in decisions to migrate and repatriate and subsequent experiences of settlement for those newly migrating between the UK to the EU following Brexit—British migrants, EU migrants and non-EU migrants?

The Project Team

Michaela Benson is Professor of Public Sociology at Lancaster University. She previously led the ERSC-funded project BrExpats, which uniquely examined the impact and consequences of the Brexit negotiations for British citizens living across the EU, and was a recent recipient of the British Academy Mid-Career Fellowship for her research Britain and its overseas citizens: from decolonisation to Brexit.

Michaela on Twitter

Professor Michaela Benson

Professor Nando Sigona is Chair of International Migration and Forced Displacement at the University of Birmingham and Director of the Institute for Research into International Migration and Superdiversity (IRiS) He is also Research Associate at the Refugee Studies Centre at the University of Oxford and Senior Research Associate at ODI.

Nando on Twitter

Professor Nando Sigona

Catherine Ruth Craven is a Research Fellow in the Institute for Research into Superdiversity at the University of Birmingham. She completed her PhD at SOAS University of London on the global-local politics of governing diaspora populations. Prior, she was a researcher on the EU H2020 funded project MAGYC and has been a visiting scholar at the Free University of Berlin, George Washington University, and York University, Ontario.

Dr Catherine Craven

Elena Zambelli is Senior Research Associate at Lancaster University. For her PhD (Gender Studies, SOAS), she explored women’s subjectivation processes in Italy across spaces of sexual consumption and sex work. As a postdoctoral researcher (VU Amsterdam), she investigated interracial couples’ experiences of racism and discrimination in Europe, as part of the ERC-funded EUROMIX project. In the past, she worked in international development programmes in the MENA region.

Dr Elena Zambelli

Terry S.H. Au-Yeung is a Research Associate in the School of Social Sciences at Cardiff University. His research interests include time and novel qualitative research methods, with a particular focus on the construction and apprehension of multi-layered temporality. Terry is a member of the international team working on Visions of Policing, an ESRC-funded ORA Round 7 project. Before returning to academia, Terry worked in a social corporation focusing on migrant workers' issues in Southeast Asia. 

Dr Terry S.H. Au-Yeung

Dr Natalia Kogut is a Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham. For her PhD, she explored environmental rights in Ukraine. As a postdoctoral researcher, she investigated the right to health including consent to treatment and reproductive rights.

Dr Natalia Kogut

Natasha is a final year Doctoral Researcher at the Institute for Research into Superdiversity (IRiS), School of Social Policy, Sociology and Criminology, University of Birmingham.

Natasha Nicholls

Anastasiia is a third-year Sociology student at Lancaster University, and a professional fencer and international referee with the biggest event - Commonwealth games. For 7 years she has been competing for her home city team, and more recently for the Lancaster university team. As an active student, she took part in several student societies - both back in Ukraine, where she started her degree, and currently in Lancaster university’s Ukrainian society.

Anastasiia Lytvyniuk

Anouk is a final year Media and Cultural Studies student at Lancaster University.

Anouk Zarza-Franklin

Project Advisory Board

Professor Catherine Barnard, Deputy Director at UK in a Changing Europe and Professor in Law, University of Cambridge
Dr Meghan Benton, Director of Research, Migration Policy Institute Europe
Caitlin Boswell, Policy and Advocacy Advisor, The Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants
Mukti Jain Campion, Director and Founder Culture Wise Productions
Professor Andrew Geddes, Director of Migration Policy Centre, European University Institute
Professor Charlotte O'Brien, Research Lead EU Rights and Brexit; York Law School
Elena Remigi, In Limbo Project
Madeleine Sumption, Director of The Migration Observatory, University of Oxford
Daryl Sinclair, Decolonise Geography
Damian Windle, Ashton Sixth Form College & Principal Examiner for Sociology at a major examination board
Debbie Williams, Brexpats Hear our Voice

Our partners

We are fortunate to be partnered with the following civil society and migrant-led organisations:


Migrant Voice

Migrant Voice is a migrant-led organisation established to develop the skills, capacity and confidence of members of migrant communities, including asylum seekers and refugees. We work to amplify migrant voices in the media and public life to counter xenophobia and build support for our rights.

Vist the Migrant Voice website for more information.

the3million is the leading organisation representing EU citizens in the UK. Our work ranges from monitoring the Withdrawal Agreement implementation, informing people of their rights and giving EU citizens a voice in British society.

Visit the the3million website for more information.

British in Europe

British in Europe is the largest coalition of British citizens living and working in Europe. With representation across the whole continent, we actively campaign for the rights of UK citizens in the EU and support EU citizens in the UK.

Visit the British in Europe website for more information.

Our Funders

This website has been produced as part of the research project Rebordering Britain and Britons after Brexit. It is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (Grant Number ES/V004530/1) through the Governance After Brexit Initiative.

Keep in touch

Keep up to date with the project’s events, blogs, research and outputs by following us on social media.