Welcoming Futures

1 April 2024 - 28 February 2025
Overview Theory Methods Outputs
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Overview

The objective of Welcoming Futures is to bring about a more equal society by working to better the wellbeing of, and provide more opportunities for, migrants and communities across the UK. It aims to do this by improving the way integration and welcoming work is structured, and by approaching this problem in partnership with influential stakeholders who work in different capacities in this field.

The central dilemma when it comes to inclusion and welcoming in the UK is that those who are responsible for providing inclusion services – for example, English language classes – are expected to do more (and more challenging) work with less (and less consistent) support. Together in partnership, we will assemble a case for a new way to do integration in the UK, including a sustainable, long-term funding model. The partnership will be comprised of those who made commitments to take this agenda forward over the past year and specifically at an event the PI and co-I hosted with Coventry City Council in January 2024, including Local Authorities (e.g. Inclusive Cities and City of Sanctuary members) networks (e.g. the Belong Cohesion Network, Welcoming International, the Local Government Association), thinktanks (More in Common, British Future and Institute for Public Policy Research), funders (e.g. Unbound Philanthropy, the Future Governance Forum and Migration Exchange), national charities (e.g. Good Faith and The Refugee, Asylum and Migration Policy (RAMP) project) and migrant-led NGOs (e.g. Ashley Community Housing and Migrant Democracy Project).

Critically, both the partnership and the ‘Future of Welcoming’ brief are primed to have maximal impact: the post general election period in the UK when priorities and policies are redefined by incoming, or re-elected, administrations at local and UK-wide levels.

Building up to this opportunity, we will hold two in-person workshops with a core group of partners and three online webinars with a broader group over the period May 2024 to November 2024, during which time we will jointly draft a ‘Future of Welcoming’ briefing and plot the details of our impact strategies. The webinars in particular will provide an opportunity to grow our partnership and buy-in for it, feed case studies into the briefing, and provide a forum for Local Authorities to exchange integration practices informally.

Learning notes from the webinars, short videos and an online home for resources will be among the communications tools we use to institutionalise the learning and test our ideas more broadly. Following the general election, the partnership will target high-level policy-makers within political parties at a ‘Future of Welcoming’ launch in London and in other contexts individually, with the objective of shaping the political and policy discourse on welcoming for the course of the next parliament. We see Welcoming Futures as a spring-board for this partnership, which we expect to extend beyond the lifespan and ambition of this one project.

Principal Investigator

Denis Kierans

Researchers

Jacqueline Broadhead, Co-Investigator

Nathan Grassi, Administration

Delphine Boagey, Communications

Funding

SDG Impact Fund