“Mind the Migrant”: reflections on being a migrant in Helsinki and Finland’s migration strategy

  • Nilay Kilinc
Avainsanat: Helsinki, Finland, migration, highly-skilled migrants, superdiversity, multiculturalism


This paper discusses Finland’s Future Migration Strategy 2020 through my personal reflections as a highly-skilled migrant in Helsinki and my social encounters with other highly-skilled migrants. The paper focuses on three aspects regarding the migration strategy: a) Finland is a safe and open country, b) everyone can find a role to play, c) diversity if part of everyday life. These principles are put into dialogue with concepts such as “creative social policy”, “superdiversity” and “multiculturalism” in order to call attention to current and possible future challenges for Finland
regarding migration and integration policies as well as creating cities of inclusion. The paper argues that migrants are a great “brain gain” for Finland, however in order to tap into the full potential of these individuals, a paradigm
change is crucial at a societal and policy level. In summary, the paper suggests, such paradigm change can take place  when the following steps can be put into action: a) more in-depth research is undertaken to understand migrant lives,  b) researchers collaborate with local authorities and NGOs, c) policymakers consider making longterm strategies, d)  migrants are involved in the actual policy decision-making processes, e) civil society is more informed about other  ethnic/national/religious communities, pluralism and urban inequalities.

Kilinc, N. (2020). “Mind the Migrant”: reflections on being a migrant in Helsinki and Finland’s migration strategy. Siirtolaisuus-Migration, 46(4), 12-17. Noudettu osoitteesta https://siirtolaisuus-migration.journal.fi/article/view/100337