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Thu, 29 Feb



Attitudes to migration: is Scotland really different?

Scotland's unique migration stance explored: fresh insights from surveys, comparative studies, and post-Brexit analysis.

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Attitudes to migration: is Scotland really different?
Attitudes to migration: is Scotland really different?

Time & Location

29 Feb 2024, 18:00 – 19:30

Edinburgh, 22-26 George St, Edinburgh EH2 2PQ, UK

About the Event

It is generally accepted that Scotland is an outlier in the UK in terms of attitudes to migration. All the main political parties have embraced the case for increasing migration to Scotland for economic and demographic reasons. Migration is not a salient and contentious issue in the Scottish media or political debate in the way it is at the UK level. Moreover, surveys have suggested that the Scottish public is generally more welcoming of migrants than their counterparts in the rest of the UK. But how different is Scotland really, and what explains the divergence?

This event brings together three fresh perspectives, each based on new findings on migration to Scotland and public attitudes. Migration Policy Scotland will present findings from its recent survey on Scottish attitudes to migration and diversity (Dr Sarah Kyambi, Director of Migration Policy Scotland). Researchers from the University of Edinburgh will report on findings from BRIDGES, a major comparative study of political debate on migration in Europe (Prof Christina Boswell and Dr Saskia Smellie). Finally, a member of the UK’s Migration Advisory Committee will share a recent analysis of patterns of migration to Scotland since Brexit (Prof Sergi Pardos-Prado, University of Glasgow).


John Curtice, Professor of Politics, University of Strathclyde; Senior Fellow, Scottish Centre for Social Research


  • Dr Sarah Kyambi, Director of Migration Policy Scotland
  • Prof Christina Boswell, University of Edinburgh
  • Dr Saskia Smellie, University of Edinburgh
  • Prof Sergi Pardos-Prado, University of Glasgow

Important points to note

  • This event is suitable for age 16+
  • Accessibility Statement: We aim to make events as accessible as possible. If you have any accessibility requirements or any questions about how we can support this event, please contact the RSE Public Engagement team on
  • Covid-19: In order to prevent the spread of Covid-19 we kindly encourage participants to continue to wear face masks if they feel comfortable to do so; use the hand sanitisers provided at the venue; and to stay at home if they have Covid symptoms or have tested positive for Covid-19.

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