Martin Lemberg-Pedersen selected for the Faculty of Social Sciences' Talent Programme for Younger Researchers

Martin Lemberg-Pedersen selected for the Faculty of Social Sciences' Talent Programme for Younger Researchers

Project title: The Marketization of Displacement

Martin Lemberg-Pedersen has been selected for the Faculty of Social Sciences' Talent Programme for Younger Researchers that starts this fall and includes a diploma in research management, fieldwork, top-level guest research stays, international universities and the organization of an international workshop. 

Lemberg-Pedersen’s talent-project has the provisional title "The Marketization of Displacement" and examines a growing aspect of state and non-state actors’ migration management, namely upscaled and accelerated collection of data. This includes many different forms of data, including about biometrics, skillsets, communication, mobility and consumption. Data is considered "the new gold" and new markets crosscutting states, consultancies, humanitarian and development actors are emerging and being created. Transnational databases are increasingly underpinning policy-making at both national, EU and global levels, and the technical risks associated with their function creeps and interoperabilities constitute pressing questions. 

This development is often framed positively in terms of migrant empowerment and increased efficiency and cost-effectiveness, asked for by donors, in migration management interventions. At the critical level, issues related to privacy, consent, and the formation of new social hierarchies for already vulnerable displacees are points of concern. Lemberg-Pedersen´s project analyses these issues through a postcolonial and political economic lens, by comparing current politics and practices with the harvesting of and reliance on data in earlier displacement, migration and labour regimes, including the European trans-Atlantic slavery from West Africa to the Americas, and the associated commodities chains in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The aim is to offer substantial reflections on the trajectories, potentialities and risks associated with the use of data in current migration management.

The project will result in a diploma in Research Management, Fieldwork, Visiting Fellowships at international top-class universities as well as the organization of an international workshop.


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Interested in reading more about Europe’s attempts to externalize border control and private security companies’ interest in externalization? Read Lemberg-Pedersen’s work on the EurAfrican borderscapes, outsourcing to Libya, the European arms industry’s export of control equipment, and the reconfiguration of the EU/Turkish border system:

► Book chapter (2018): Security, industry and migration in European border control

► Book chapter (2016) Effective protection or effective combat? EU Border Control and North Africa

► Book chapter (2015) Between asylum and security. Reconfigurations in the EU/Turkish borderscapes

► Book-chapter (2015) Losing the right to have right. EU Externalization of Border Control

► Book-chapter (2013) Private Security Companies and the EU Borderscapes


Read earlier GRS’ news on EU migration control and externalization here:

► Making money from EU's migration policies in Libya

► Tödliche Seenotrettung: Die brutalen Einsätze der libyschen Küstenwache im Mittelmeer

► Migrantkrisen - Når Europa meler sin egen kage


Other reserach projects by Martin Lemberg-Pedersen

► Advancing Alternative Migration Governance (ADMIGOV)

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