Call for Papers Time, Temporalities and Migration Law till 01 April 2024

Time, Temporalities and Migration Law: International seminar on the
role and meaning of time in Migration Law

Co-organized by the Amsterdam Centre of Migration and Refugee Law, VU Amsterdam and the Uppsala Forum for Democracy, Peace and Justice, Uppsala University.

05-06 September 2024, Uppsala

After the successful international conference ‘Temporalities in Migration Law’ held at the Amsterdam Centre for Migration and Refugee Law, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, on 1-2 June 2023, a second event is being organized at Uppsala University, Sweden, on 5-6 September 2024.

The aim of this international seminar is twofold: firstly, to further explore the relationship between law, time, and migration; and secondly, to contribute to an edited volume on ‘Time, Temporalities, and Migration Law’. This volume aims to provide comprehensive insight into the role and significance of time and temporalities in the regulation of international mobility and migration through legal frameworks. Selected papers presented at the international seminar will be considered for inclusion in the edited volume. The international seminar is co-organized by the Department of Law and the Department of Philosophy at Uppsala University, the Uppsala Forum on Democracy, Peace, and Justice, the Swedish Institute of International Law (SIFIR) at Uppsala University and the Amsterdam Centre for Migration and Refugee Law, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

Keynote speakers:

On the theme:
Barbara Adam emphasized that we often intuitively understand and navigate different perceptions of time without consciously acknowledging their distinctions (Adam 1995). This observation is equally applicable to the concept of time in legal contexts. Legal time is multifaceted: it is not always linear, uniformly paced, or measurable. Legal time might be based on clocks or calendars, yet it can also reflect human experiences of time, encompassing aspects like age or duration. Recent research in migration law has begun exploring the implications and roles of time and temporal methods (e.g., Durieux 2014, Ineli-Ciger 2018, Reneman & Stronks 2021, Stronks 2022; Stronks 2022a). Concurrently, there is an expanding body of work in migration and citizenship studies examining migration through a temporal perspective (e.g., Griffiths 2014; 2017; 2021; Cohen 2018; Tazzioli 2018, Eule et al 2019; Jacobsen et al. 2020).

Our international seminar and forthcoming edited volume aim to elucidate the varied interpretations of time in migration, identify temporal legal strategies employed to regulate people’s movement, and assess how time influences notions of justice in migration regulation. We begin by exploring different conceptualizations of legal time and temporalities. Our focus is on how time and temporalities are utilized in legal frameworks, their functions in migration law, the interplay and impact of various temporal concepts within migration law, and how legal time corresponds with theories of justice.

We welcome scholarly contributions on topics including, but not limited to:

  • Meanings of Time and Temporality in Migration Law: This encompasses various dimensions of time in law—clock-time, calendar-based time, human time, age, duration, and beyond. Time can manifest as chronological, eschatological, or as a process of becoming. Humans, as temporal beings, experience life across past, present, and future. Law similarly navigates and sometimes reconciles multiple temporalities, constructing and utilizing notions of past, present, future, and even eternity (e.g., in cases like undocumented migrant exclusion or Article 1F of the Refugee Convention).
  • Temporal Legal Techniques: Legal frameworks utilize time retrospectively (e.g., antedating residence permits, withdrawing status due to fraud), and in adjudication by anchoring relevant moments in the past (ex tunc) or present (ex nunc). Temporal aspects also appear in categorizing migrants, using deadlines for applications, assessing evidence within time limits, and in age-determination for family reunification. Risk calculation in the withdrawal of residence permits following crimes demonstrates using past events to predict future risks. Duration calculations for long-term residence, including the treatment of temporary unlawful residence or territorial absence, are further instances of temporal legal techniques.
  • Temporal Conceptions of Justice: Legal time, unlike impersonal clock-time, is inherently subjective and normative. It often intersects with power dynamics. This theme explores the just balance between different temporal concepts within legal contexts (e.g., human time versus clock time). It includes discussions on community membership, the role of sustained territorial presence in migrants’ rights and status, regularization, and the implications of clock-
    time as a measure of integration or assimilation.

The seminar is open to submissions addressing these themes in various ways. We welcome contributions from scholars working in (migration) law, political theory, philosophy, social sciences, and other relevant fields. We expect papers (5,000-7,000 words) to be submitted for discussion at the conference in Uppsala on 5-6 September 2024.

Please send your expression of interest, a proposed title, and an abstract of no more than 500 words to before 1 April 2024.

For questions concerning the programme and abstract submissions, please contact

Click here to download the Call for Contribution.