Double-Edged Sword: What Returnee Networks Reveal about the Opportunities and Limits of Feminist Migration Policy

10 May 2023
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Double-Edged Sword

Germany’s new strategy for a feminist development policy, which was recently presented by Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development Svenja Schulze, has a clear goal: to strengthen the representation and equal participation of women and marginalized groups in social, political, and economic decision-making processes at all levels. But how can this goal be translated into practice? Which opportunities does the new approach provide, and which pitfalls loom?

The DGAP Report “Double-Edged Sword: How to Engage Returnee Networks in Migrant Reintegration” addresses these questions. It highlights the work of returnee networks, i.e., groups of migrants who return to their home countries and come together to help each other and advocate for reintegration support. On the one hand, engaging such groups in the planning and implementation of reintegration policies can amplify their voices and influence – as called for by feminist migration policy. But on the other, as shown by DGAP’s analysis, it also risks deepening existing hierarchies or even the exclusion of women or vulnerable groups. Participants at this event will discuss how to square this circle.


Hannah Neumann,
Member of the European Parliament and Member of DGAP’s Advisory Council

Presentation of “Double-Edged Sword: How to Engage Returnee Networks in Migrant Reintegration”:

Sophie Meiners, Research Fellow, Migration Program, DGAP

Panel Discussion:

Stefanie Scharf, Head of Division “Policy Issues of Displacement and Migration,” Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)

Nazanine Nozarian, Programme Specialist on Return, Readmission, and Reintegration, International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD)

Olumide Samuel, Founder and Director, Migrants Hope Again

Sophie Meiners, Research Fellow, Migration Program, DGAP

Chair: Victoria Rietig, Head of the Migration Program, DGAP

Please register for the event via You will receive a confirmation email containing details about joining us on May 9.

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