Stockholm University
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Onward Migration of African Europeans:Comparing Attitudes to Migration Motives

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posted on 2021-04-16, 13:59 authored by Karen Haandrikman, Sadia Hassanen
Studies on the mobility patterns of African refugees who fled to Europe have shown that Somalis especially tend to move onward from continental Europe to the UK. African migrants have long been moving to Sweden, known for its liberal migration and naturalization policies. However, these migrants are among the least integrated in Sweden, both socially and economically. This paper aims to increase our knowledge of onward migration, both in terms of migration attitudes and actual migration motives. We compare onward migration attitudes among African Swedes in Sweden with reported migration motives of those who migrated onward to Australia, and patterns of onward migration from Sweden. Results show that very few migrants have definite plans to move, but most are unhappy with their socio-economic situation and are subject to discrimination, though being grateful for all Sweden has offered them. Quantitative analyses show a massive recent increase in onward migration, especially among Somalis. Onward migrants are more often male, single and very few are employed despite reasonable educational levels, before they move onwards, mostly to the UK. Onward migrants to Australia report having moved in order to improve their livelihood prospects; furthermore they feel more accepted and fare much better in Australia.


the Swedish Research Council (Vetenskapsrådet) via the Linnaeus Center for Social Policy and Family Dynamics in Europe (SPaDE), grant registration number 349-2007-8701

the Swedish Initiative for research on Microdata in the Social and Medical Sciences (SIMSAM): Register-based Research in Nordic Demography, grant 839-2008-7495




Original title

Onward Migration of African Europeans:Comparing Attitudes to Migration Motives

Original language

  • English

Publication date


Affiliation (institution of first SU-affiliated author)

  • 304 Kulturgeografiska institutionen | Department of Human Geography