Social Embeddedness in a Harmonized Europe: European Bi-National Couples in Belgium and the Netherlands

Suzana M. Koelet, Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Internal mobility is getting ever more important in Europe. Although the migration move might be easier to realize for European migrants compared to those from outside the EU, it can still be experienced as socially disruptive. This paper for the first time studies social networks of European migrants in comparative perspective. First we question how European migrants succeed in inserting themselves into the social fabric of their new European home country. Second we relate the latter to the investment in transnational networks in their European country of origin. The national and transnational networks and its links are studied from the perspective of European nationals with a native partner in Belgium and the Netherlands. We apply structural equation models on unique survey data from the international EUMARR project including 728 Europeans for our study. We find clear differences in networks between traditional labor migrants, recent migrants and migrants from neighboring countries.

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Presented in Poster Session 4: Migration and Urbanization; Population, Development and the Environment