• Jakob Højriis Markussen
4. semester, Politik og Administration, Kandidat (Kandidatuddannelse)
This Master's thesis, “A policy analysis of the circumstances that led to the introduction of Denmark’s first law of integration”, is inspired by the frequent public media debate over the question about refugees and immigrants residing in Denmark. More specific it deals with the discrepancy between the Refugee Convention of 1951, which Denmark has adopted, and the particular social benefit called introduction payment, which was launched as a result of Denmark's new law of integration. The particular introduction payment applies first and foremost for non-citizenships, but Danish citizens, which have been staying outside of Denmark for seven out of eight years, are also included in the target group. However, the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance points out that the majority of Danish citizens, which have been abroad for a longer period of time, do not need any social benefits at their return to Denmark. Therefore, the particular introduction payment constitutes an indirect discrimination, because it holds a lower income value than the standard social benefits for citizens. The thesis’ aim is to give an answer, that can explain how and why the particular introduction payment came to appear on the politicians agenda. Empirically the thesis focus on the printed media, as they have had a decisive impact on the decision making process. The theoretical foundation for this project consists off a new institutionalistic approach in the shape of Historical Institutionalism. Historical institutionalism has a strong focus on institutions, which proves practical for this project. However, historical institutionalism needs to be supplemented by a more media relevant theory, as the one Stanley Cohen provides. Stanley Cohen has an Agenda Setting approach to the media, which makes a fine contribution to historical institutionalism in the ambition to explain how the particular introduction payment landed on the politicians agenda. In the search for an answer to why the introduction payment could reach the politicians agenda, and secondly, why it was adopted in conjunction with the first law of integration, historical institutionalism's idea of institutional path-dependency comes to play here. However, whereas historical institutionalism only draws on its notion of institutional path-dependency, a last contribution is needed, which comes from an entirely different field of political science. Jürgen Habermas’ theory of deliberative democracy contributes with a normative offspring. The idea is to give rise to an alternative view on why the Danish government passed a law that several NGOs had warned against. Historical institutionalism and Stanley Cohen end up with a qualified answer based on the printed media's involvement in the question of the particular introduction payment, whereas Habermas gives the project a different perspective that eventually will lead to new policy frontiers.
Antal sider81
Udgivende institutionAalborg Universitet
ID: 17784160