Integration of Immigrants with Different Cultural Background: the German Experience

Integration of Immigrants with Different Cultural Background:
the German Experience

Bardin A.L.,

Reserarcher, Center for Comparative Socio-Economic and Political Studies, Primakov National Research Institute of World Economy and International Relations, Russian Academy of Sciences (IMEMO). Moscow, Russia,

elibrary_id: 684500 |

DOI: 10.17976/jpps/2017.06.12

For citation:

Bardin A.L. Integration of Immigrants with Different Cultural Background: the German Experience. – Polis. Political Studies. 2017. No. 6. P. 169-177. (In Russ.).


The article deals with the German integration policy toward the refugees that arrived in the country since 2013, including on the wave of the 2015 migration crisis. Analysis includes such aspects of integration policy as its discursive design, education (language and integration courses), refugees’ access to the labor market, social integration and the identity of immigrants. The “bottlenecks” and the most urgent problems of German integration policy are shown, along with the possible ways of solving some of them. Among the key problems of the integration policy are the lack of inclusivity of integration and language courses, which can be attended only by the refugees with a recognition index (Anerkennungsquote) above 50%. A lot of course participants are unable to complete their studies, and afterwards, demonstrate a low level of knowledge. Integration of refugees on the labor market is generally assessed as positive; however, there is a number of administrative barriers in this sphere, such as a ban on work in particular German territories for refugees with low recognition indexes, as well as restrictions on the change of residence. A number of pressing problems of integration policy lie in the field of psychology: the key of them are the search for refugees of a new identity and their difficult psychological condition (almost one in every three refugees is susceptible to one or another psychological disorder). However, in the situation of uncertainty, while the refugee has to wait for a long time for a decision on his application, the therapy is virtually useless, and the problem of refugees’ search for identity doesn’t have any efficient solution. The value basis of integration policy remains limited: without a full solution to this problem, the fundamental positive changes in its implementation are still questionable. A significant contribution to the integration of refugees is made by volunteers who receive refugees to their families, provide mentoring and other types of support. All in all, successful integration happens most often, if an individual approach to refugees is combined with their adoption of local practices, formal and informal settings. Despite the fact that civil society greatly contributes to integration of refugees, the interaction between the state and the civil society is not always effective. Thus, two of the three German citizens who provided assistance to refugees (both professionally and voluntarily) faced regulatory and legislative problems. In general, despite a number of difficulties, Germany demonstrates considerable success in the field of integration policy, which is in line with the generally optimistic attitude of the Germans regarding the prospects for the integration of refugees. 

immigration policy; integration policy; Germany; identity; immigrants with different cultural background; identity; interculturalism.


Einwanderung gestalten, Flüchtlinge schützen. Manifest für eine zukunftsfähige Migrations-, Flüchtlings- und Integrationspolitik. – Rat für Migration. 2017. URL: (accessed 01.10.2017).

IAB-BAMF-SOEP-Befragung von Geflüchteten 2016: Studiendesign, Feldergebnisse sowie Analysen zu schulischer wie beruflicher Qualifikation, Sprachkenntnissen sowie kognitiven Potenzialen. Ed. by Brücker H., Rother N., Schupp J. DIW Berlin: Politikberatung kompakt 123. 2017. 85 p. URL: (accessed 04.09.2017).

Lochner S. Integrationskurse als Motor für gesellschaftlichen Zusammenhalt?: interethnische Kontakte und nationale Verbundenheit von MigrantInnen in Deutschland. Budrich UniPress Ltd. 2015. 251 p.

Nach der Flucht: Der Weg in die Arbeit. Arbeitsmarktintegration von Flüchtlingen in Deutschland. 2017. OECD. 64 p. URL:

Oberhof M. „Refugees welcome!“: die Geschichte einer gelungenen Integration: so können Sie Flüchtlingen helfen. Goldmann Verlag. 2016. 336 p. 

Content No. 6, 2017

See also:

Bardin A.L.,
The Problem of Migration in German Academic Discourse. – Polis. Political Studies. 2016. No6

De Vreede E.,
Culture, civilization and identity. – Polis. Political Studies. 2012. No5

Kholodkovskii K.G.,
Freedom vs Security? Europe and Mass Immigration. – Polis. Political Studies. 2019. No2

Tsapenko I.P., Monusova G.A.,
Integration Capacity of Ethno-Cultural Diversity in European Societies. – Polis. Political Studies. 2017. No4

Rogozin D.M.,
Family Citizenship of the Youth in the Northern Caucasus. – Polis. Political Studies. 2007. No1



Introducing an article

Polis. Political Studies
2 2004

Melville A.Yu.
On Trajectories of Post-Communist Transformations

 The article text


   2024      2023      2022      2021   
   2020      2019      2018      2017      2016   
   2015      2014      2013      2012      2011   
   2010      2009      2008      2007      2006   
   2005      2004      2003      2002      2001   
   2000      1999      1998      1997      1996   
   1995      1994      1993      1992      1991