About the Section


The aim of the section is the active promotion of scientific exchange and discussion on social science and sociological aspects of topics in the field of migration and ethnic minorities. Our work contributes to the further development of theory formation, research and teaching within the framework of the objectives of the German Sociological Association (GSA).


The beginnings of the section on Migration and Ethnic Minorities can be traced back to initiatives in the early 1980s, when colleagues in the field were looking for new research perspectives to overcome what was called ›Ausländerforschung‹ in the German-speaking world at that time. Since its founding in 1985, the section has been concerned with offering scholars in migration research a forum for networking and various activities. As a sociological grouping within the GSA, we are particularly concerned with covering the theoretical paradigms, methodologies and empirical procedures in the sociology of migration. Inter- and transdisciplinary debates in migration research are therefore an important field of the section›s work.


The section "Migration and Ethnic Minorities" organizes conferences and workshops twice a year as well as sessions at the Congress of the German Sociological Association. With its newsletter and website, the section aims to provide orientation in the field of migration research. It offers the opportunity of forming working groups on specific topics and regularly awards the "young researchers‹" award for particularly outstanding dissertations. In addition, summer schools for and with younger colleagues on current debates can be planned in cooperation with individual universities.

Members and Membership

The section has 226 members (as of January 2021). In addition to sociology, the main disciplines represented are educational science, communication and cultural studies. In addition to university members, employees from research institutions and public authorities are represented. The vast majority of new members who have joined since 2013 are younger colleagues. Membership in the GSA is desired in the sense of networking, but is not a condition for section membership.