Migrant Youth Integration & Empowerment


The MIMY research project in the UK aims to improve the situation of young people in South Yorkshire, namely Sheffield and Barnsley. We are researching the situation of international migrant young people (aged 15-29) in the wider local population, who have encountered difficult circumstances. We aim to understand challenges faced, and what builds empowered pathways.

MIMY aims to understand more about services that support migrant youth and young people facing challenging circumstances, the difficulties they encounter, and how positive social relations can be built. The MIMY project will run until January 2023. The MIMY project research team in the UK is based at the University of Sheffield.

Who are we doing this research with?

In this project we will learn from the following groups who can provide complex, and layered understanding of the challenges and opportunities within young people’s integration pathways:

  • Young international migrants aged 15-29
  • Young people in the wider local population aged 15-29
  • Parents of young people with migration experiences
  • People with migration experiences living in the areas for over 5 years
  • Service providers and practitioners that play a role in integration processes
What does our youth-centred approach look like?

MIMY puts young people at the centre and recognises the power of young people to create knowledge and affect change. We work with young people to promote their leadership, build skills, give recognition to their time and ensure they receive feedback on the research at every step along the way. Young people are involved in the following ways:

  • Developing and implementing the project as youth peer researchers (2021)
  • Generating knowledge as participants sharing their stories and experiences (2021)
  • Working collectively across diverse life experiences and backgrounds to develop ideas through arts-based action research projects to drive inclusive change (2022)
  • Co-designing and participating in knowledge exchange events with service providers and researchers to share their ideas and experiences (2022)

Read experiences shared by youth peer researchers in the MIMY Youth Blog here.

Are you interested in being involved in the research as a participant?

Watch this video from MIMY researchers Majella, Maria Teresa, Ryan and Thea as they tell you about the research project in Sheffield and Barnsley and what to expect from getting involved.

How will our research generate impact and influence?

Stakeholder Networking: We are feeding into and supporting opportunities for service providers, practitioners, activists and youth leaders to engage with others who have a role to play in young people’s integration. In 2022 we will host workshops and events to discuss research findings and work together towards policy influencing.

Arts-based action research and design thinking: We are partnering with Stand and Be Counted (SBC) theatre to run an arts-based action research process in Sheffield and Barnsley to work with young people with diverse backgrounds to explore and articulate their ideas for change. We will bring the creative knowledge into dialogue with stakeholders to develop strategies for inclusive change for young people.

Look at example’s of SBC’s work led by people seeking sanctuary:

Can you hear me now? : created by sanctuary-seekers, a celebratory, large-scale outdoor performance around raising voice and being heard. Have your passport ready : Led by brothers Khaled and Mohammad Aljawad from Syria, an immersive experience in proving their right to remain in the UK.

Partnership building for influence: Through our National Expert Committee we are working with Migration Yorkshire (strategic migration partnership for Yorkshire and Humber), University of Huddersfield, University of Leeds, migrant rights campaigners and local policymakers to translate our research findings into policy.

MIMY at the EU level

The EU research project MIMY aims to improve the situation of young migrants in Europe through a multi-level analysis of related integration processes. Collecting qualitative and quantitative data and conducting case studies in nine countries, the interdisciplinary consortium will analyse the social and economic effects of integration processes in order to derive evidence-based policy recommendations. Over the three years, the 12 European partners are funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Framework Programme.

The team from the University of Sheffield includes:

The MIMY consortium comprises 12 European partners from Belgium, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Luxembourg, Norway, Poland, Romania, Sweden and the UK. On 10-11 February 2020, they come together for the official project kick-off in Luxembourg.

Project Key Facts

Title: MIMY – EMpowerment through liquid Integration of Migrant Youth in vulnerable conditions
Start: 1 February 2020
Duration: 36 months
Budget: 2,999,998.75 €
Coordinator: Université du Luxembourg
Website: www.mimy-project.eu

Project Partners

Academia de Studii Economice din Bucuresti, Romania

Europese Confederatie Van Organisaties Voor Jeugdcentra ECYC Vereniging, Belgium

EURICE – European Research and Project Office GmbH, Germany

HAWK Hochschule für Angewandte Wissenschaft und Kunst Fachhochschule Hildesheim/Holzminden/Göttingen, Germany

ILS – Institut für Landes- und Stadtentwicklungsforschung gGmbH, Germany

Kozep-Europai Egyetem, Hungary

London Metropolitan University

Malmö Universitet, Sweden

SWPS Uniwersytet Humanistycznospoleczny, Poland

The University of Sheffield, United Kingdom

Universitá Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Italy

Université du Luxembourg, Luxembourg

Universitetet I Bergen, Norway

European consortium lead contact information

Project Coordination:

Université du Luxembourg
Prof. Birte Nienaber
Phone: +352 4666449318
Mail: birte.nienaber@uni.lu

Project Management:

Nadine Schepp
Phone: +49 6894 388 1346
Mail: n.schepp@eurice.eu

 The MIMY project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 870700.