Introduction: migration and social policy: key trends and debates
This volume seeks to accomplish four goals. First, it hopes to bring to the community of migration and social policy researchers up-to-date and authoritative summaries and reviews of the state of play in the field. Second, we wished to draw on the significant contributions that arise out of several social science disciplines. Toward that end, we solicited chapters written by persons who hang their hats in different departments but who are able to reach across disciplinary boundaries theoretically and methodologically. In this we have succeeded beyond our expectations. Political scientists, economists, sociologists and historians have all contributed chapters. Third, contributors were charged with the task of exploring important issues arising from migration and social policy from the standpoint of a theoretical framework that allowed them to pose hypotheses that could be tested with data. Readers with strong interests in the normative and ethical dimensions of our topic will find, we trust, evidence posed against data that should in the best of circumstances illuminate if not settle serious normative disagreements. Fourth, we deliberately invited colleagues divided by age and prominence. This handbook includes chapters penned by some of the most distinguished scholars writing on the topic; others were written or co-authored by promising junior scholars.