A1 Journal article (refereed)
Enroling around : Reconfiguring place and space in the wake of a new reception centre in a small rural town (2022)

Välimaa, M., Vähä‐Savo, V., & Hiitola, J. (2022). Enroling around : Reconfiguring place and space in the wake of a new reception centre in a small rural town. Population, Space and Place, Early View. https://doi.org/10.1002/psp.2623

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Välimaa, Mira; Vähä‐Savo, Valtteri; Hiitola, Johanna

Journal or series: Population, Space and Place

ISSN: 1544-8444

eISSN: 1544-8452

Publication year: 2022

Publication date: 23/10/2022

Volume: Early View

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

Publication country: United Kingdom

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/psp.2623

Publication open access: Not open

Publication channel open access: Channel is not openly available

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/85428


The paper examines how a small rural town Kauhava, Finland, is reconfigured in the wake of a reception centre being established. Drawing on the conceptual toolbox of the sociology of associations, we find that regardless of attitudes towards asylum seekers, people springing into action and enroling others leads to the problematisation and intensification of place. This involves turning public and private spaces into contested places. Competing definitions of community and identity emerge. While new identities are configured, new associations and ways of linking actors and places together also take form. The paper examines how the micropolitics of place and belonging are carried out in practice, and what types of mechanisms bring about or prevent new conjunctions and transformations in places. The data consist of interviews in Kauhava with town officials, reception centre volunteers, opponents of the centre and refugees who have stayed in the town.

Keywords: assemblages; refugees; asylum seekers; immigrants; immigration; refugee reception centres; communities (organisations)

Free keywords: assemblage; belonging; contested space; migration; sociology of associations

Contributing organizations

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2022

Preliminary JUFO rating: 1

Last updated on 2023-03-04 at 08:30