Research

 

You will find a complete range of our monographs, muti-authored and edited works including peer-reviewed, original scholarly research across the social sciences and aligned disciplines. We publish long and short form research and you can browse the complete Bristol University Press and Policy Press archive of over 1,500 titles.

Policy Press also publishes policy reviews and polemic work which aim to challenge policy and practice in certain fields. These books have a practitioner in mind and are practical, accessible in style, as well as being academically sound and referenced.
 

Books: Research

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Human Rights, Law, and Society

This thought-provoking collection brings together academics from a range of disciplines to examine modern slavery.

It illustrates how different disciplinary positions, methodologies and perspectives form and clash together through a kaleidoscopic view and forms a unique insight into critical modern slavery studies. Providing a platform to critique the legal, ideological and political responses to the issue, experts interrogate the construct of modern slavery and the anti-trafficking discourse which have dominated contemporary responses to and understandings of exploitation.

Drawing from real-world examples across the world, this is a vital contribution to the study of modern slavery.

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The House, the Street, the Town

This book offers an in-depth exploration of the lives of EU migrant workers in the UK following Brexit and COVID-19.

Drawing on a longitudinal study, the book delves into the legal problems migrant workers face and sheds much-needed light on the hidden interactions between the law and communities around issues such as employment, housing, welfare and health. Through personal narratives and insights gathered from interviews, it reveals how (clustered) legal problems arise, are resolved and often bypass formal legal resolution pathways.

This is an invaluable resource that provides a rich picture of everyday life for migrant workers in the UK and highlights the vital role of NGOs working to support them.

Open access
Syrian Refugees, Bureaucracy, and Inclusion
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Syrian refugees who gained asylum in Germany following the so-called refugee crisis in 2015 quickly entered into an ‘integration regime’ which produced a binary notion of ‘well integrated’ migrants versus refugees falling short of the narrow social and political definitions of a ‘good’ refugee.

Etzel’s rich ethnographic study shows how refugees navigated this conditional inclusion. While some asylum seekers gained international protection, others were left with limited agency to demand government accountability for the ever-moving target of integration.

Putting a spotlight on the inconsistencies and failings of a universal approach to integration, this is an important contribution to the wider field of migration and anthropology of the state.

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Voices from the Detention Processes in Greece

In recent times, Greece is often viewed as the gateway to Europe for high numbers of asylum-seeking individuals, including unaccompanied minors. Between 2016 and 2020, under Greek law unaccompanied children were to be temporarily placed in a protective environment upon irregular entry, pending referral to suitable accommodation. However, in practice, they were being subjected to detention procedures instead.

Giving voice to migrant children and professionals throughout, the author combines legal analysis with criminology and unveils the reality within detention facilities. The findings demonstrate that unaccompanied children in Greece are criminalised through detention processes, while being deprived of the right to be heard.

This book promotes child-friendly practices in the international migration context, with a view to safeguarding the fundamental rights of unaccompanied minors experiencing detention upon arrival in host countries.

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Building Bridges, Not Barriers
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How many questions could you answer in a pub quiz about British values?

Designed to ensure new migrants have accepted British values and integrated, the UK’s citizenship test is often portrayed as a bad pub quiz with answers few citizens know. With the launch of a new post-Brexit immigration system, this is a critical time to change the test.

Thom Brooks draws on first-hand experience of taking the test, and interviews with key figures including past Home Secretaries, to expose the test as ineffective and a barrier to citizenship. This accessible guide offers recommendations for transforming the citizenship test into a ‘bridge to citizenship’ which fosters greater inclusion and integration.

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The word ‘refugee’ is both evocative and contested; it means different things to different people. For lawyers, the main legal reference point is the UN Refugee Convention of 1951.

This concise and engaging book follows the structure of the Convention to explore international refugee law. Including an introduction to the historical and legal context, Colin Yeo draws on his experience as an immigration barrister to explain the present-day legal framework for global refugee protection. Chapters consider:

  • well-founded fear;

  • persecution;

  • the loss of refugee status and exclusion;

  • the rights of refugees;

  • and state responses to refugee claims.

The book includes studies of key legal cases, reviews the successes and failures of the Convention and looks ahead to the future, including the impact of climate change and the Global Compact on Refugees.

Communicating important legal concepts in an approachable way, this is an essential guide for students, lawyers and non-specialists.

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In recent years, the United Kingdom's Home Office has started using automated systems to make immigration decisions. These systems promise faster, more accurate, and cheaper decision-making, but in practice they have exposed people to distress, disruption, and even deportation.

This book identifies a pattern of risky experimentation with automated systems in the Home Office. It analyses three recent case studies including: a voice recognition system used to detect fraud in English-language testing; an algorithm for identifying ‘risky’ visa applications; and automated decision-making in the EU Settlement Scheme.

The book argues that a precautionary approach is essential to ensure that society benefits from government automation without exposing individuals to unacceptable risks.

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Challenges for Publicly Funded Immigration and Asylum Legal Representation
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Even though legal aid is available for people seeking asylum, there is uneven access to advice across Britain.

Based on empirical research, this book offers fresh thinking on what has gone wrong in the legal aid market. It presents a rare picture of the barristers, solicitors and caseworkers practising immigration law in charities and private firms. In doing so, this book examines supply and demand and illuminates what constitutes high-quality legal aid work/provision, subsequent conflicts with financial rationality and how practitioners resolve these issues.

Challenging existing legal aid policy, this book presents innovative insights to ensure public service markets around the globe function well for all those involved.

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Identity, care and justice

Taking a multi-disciplinary perspective, and one grounded in human rights, Unaccompanied young migrants explores in-depth the journeys migrant youths take through the UK legal and care systems.

Arriving with little agency, what becomes of these children as they grow and assume new roles and identities, only to risk losing legal protection as they reach eighteen?

Through international studies and crucially the voices of the young migrants themselves, the book examines the narratives they present and the frameworks of culture and legislation into which they are placed. It challenges existing policy and questions, from a social justice perspective, what the treatment of this group tells us about our systems and the cultural presuppositions on which they depend.

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Experiencing nationality law
Author:

Available Open Access under CC-BY-NC licence.

Long term resident migrants to the UK, who often possess valuable skills for the economy, still face significant barriers to citizenship. In this important book, Dr Prabhat captures the experiences of those who successfully become British citizens through stories of belonging, citizenship and the law; beautifully illustrated by artist Sam Church. Speaking to contemporary times of Brexit, the book exposes the challenges which become insurmountable for many migrants, and illuminates the gap between policy and practice in gaining British citizenship.

Open access