The Politics of Migration to Western Europe: Ireland in Comparative Perspective
This article locates Ireland’s relatively recent experience with mass immigration within a comparative West European context. It poses two questions: To what degree has Ireland become a “normal” country of immigration? What does the Irish case reveal about the contemporary politics of migration to Western Europe? The article’s main finding is that Ireland’s experience with mass immigration since the 1990s appears to be following a political trajectory similar to that of the traditional immigration-receiving states, despite being removed from the latter by as many as four decades. This said, the evidence suggests that some of the policy challenges precipitated by mass immigrant settlement may be currently arriving earlier in time than previously.