Welcome to Britain? Immigration, generation and belonging

University College London
Monday, 10 February 2014 from 13:00 to 14:30 (GMT)

London, United Kingdom

Attitudes towards immigrants can often vary by generation, with younger people holding different anxieties surrounding immigration than older people. Over the past five decades underlying views on social and economic outcomes have informed who should and should not be welcome to Britain and why. This panel discussion explores the historic and personal experience of immigrants of different ages. It will seek to answer questions such as ‘will a generational shift bring about positive attitudes to migration or will growing inequality lead to a marked divide in attitudes’?

Key Speaker:

Suresh Grover is a prominent social justice activist and campaigner. The Guardian newspaper has described Suresh as one of the hundred most influential people in social policy in the UK. He is the leading exponent of family led empowerment and justice campaigns in the UK. He led the campaigns to help families of Stephen Lawrence, Zahid Mubarek and Victoria Climbie – all these cases led to Public Judicial Inquiries and consequent changes in legislation, social policies and practices. He is currently writing his book on race relations in the UK, due to be published next year

Panel Members:

Derek Anderson, PhD student.  School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research  University of Kent. Derek is a former journalist who has a background in migration and is currently researching how post accession Polish migrants ‘integrate’ (or not) into British society, and whether different levels of education and skills have any impact on this process. Derek hopes that his research will contribute to theorizing on migration and integration during a time of growing ‘superdiversity’, as most  studies on integration (in Britain) have been done on migrants from Commonwealth countries, while Poles represent a different type of migrant – predominantly white and catholic, and without a post-colonial connection.

Eiri Ohtani is a freelance consultant and works for a number of NGOs including the Detention Forum, an advocacy network which challenges the UK’s practice of immigration detention.  Eiri has been involved in the refugee, asylum and immigration sector since 2000 and has many years of senior management experience, including directorship at Asylum Support Appeals Project, a specialist legal representation NGO.  A graduate of London School of Economics, she also holds postgraduate degrees from the School of Oriental and African Studies and Birkbeck, University of London.

Roxanne Walters is the Director of Associated Media Ltd, Chair of Educating Beyond Borders & also runs several voluntary projects as Director of Golden Spirits, a subsidiary of Associated Media Ltd.She is also the Creative Director of the international couture label TalisaQi

She is a Commonwealth Spokesperson for international students. She actively provides support and representation to any international student in the UK who has any concern while studying. She specializes in the unique issues that students on vocational HE courses encounter, especially architecture. She holds many awards & honours for her architecture studies. Her award winning work has been published widely in the UK & globally in various magazines,books & academic text books, including a double page spread in the hugely popular US Magazine Black Beauty & Hair. She is the winner of several prestigious international design & architecture competitions.


Maki Kimura is a Teaching Fellow in gender and politics in the School of Public Policy at UCL. She holds a Ph.D. in gender studies and has an extensive experience in researching and teaching in the area of gender, race and ethnicity. Since coming to the UK to study as an international student, the issue around immigration has been of her concern as  this significantly impacts on many people’s lives.


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