A1 Journal article (refereed)
Beware of the “poverty migrant” : media discourses on EU labour migration and the welfare state in Germany and the UK (2021)

Danaj, S., & Wagner, I. (2021). Beware of the “poverty migrant” : media discourses on EU labour migration and the welfare state in Germany and the UK. Zeitschrift für Sozialreform, 67(1), 1-27. https://doi.org/10.1515/zsr-2021-0001

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Danaj, Sonila; Wagner, Ines

Journal or series: Zeitschrift für Sozialreform

ISSN: 0514-2776

eISSN: 2366-0295

Publication year: 2021

Publication date: 01/05/2021

Volume: 67

Issue number: 1

Pages range: 1-27

Publisher: Walter de Gruyter GmbH

Publication country: Germany

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/zsr-2021-0001

Publication open access: Openly available

Publication channel open access: Partially open access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/76239


This article examines the role of the media in the EU freedom of movement debate through the lens of high-circulation German and UK newspapers during the first half of 2014. It explores how the media problematised migration from Eastern European member states and its influence on national host country labour markets and welfare systems. It also analyses how different media outlets positioned themselves in relation to relevant policies or policy proposals. The findings show that most articles in our sample present low-skill, low-wage working European Union (EU) migrant class referred to as “poverty migrants” as a problem to be addressed at the policy level in contrast with the economically self-sufficient migrant with marketable skills. The article contributes to discussions on work, welfare, and mobility in the EU by cross-fertilising the literature on migration policy, freedom of movement, social rights, and the media.

Keywords: immigration; labour immigration; freedom of movement; welfare state; immigration policy; EU policy; threat perceptions; public discussion; journalistic writing

Free keywords: EU migrants; poverty migrant; print media; Germany; UK

Contributing organizations

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2021

JUFO rating: 1

Last updated on 2022-20-09 at 15:16