Ezgi Irgil (2020) Broadening the positionality in migration studies: Assigned insider category. Migration Studies. Online first. (Article)
This article contributes to the debates on positionality in migration studies by introducing assigned insider as a new category. I define it as a position when both the interviewees and the researcher are of the same local origin in which the researcher is considered ‘an insider of the host community’ and the interview questions are about a migrant group. I developed this category based on interviews with host community members during my field study in Bursa, Turkey, where I was born and raised. Previous studies focused on the researcher being an insider from a migrant community or being an outsider conducting research on a migrant community different from his/her own. Assigned insider has two elements that require it to be considered differently: same local origin operates as an overriding feature that goes beyond ethnicity and the interviewees being from the host community involves different ethical aspects than that from a migrant community. I argue that these reflect on the researcher during the interviews through active and passive discontent manifestations of the interviewees. While the former emphasises the direct confrontations of the interviewees that lead them to ‘correct’ the researcher, the latter manifests itself through non-verbal ways, which can result in refraining from answering questions.

Mine Islar & Ezgi Irgil (2018) Grassroots practices of citizenship and politicization in the urban: the case of right to the city initiatives in Barcelona. Citizenship Studies 22(5): 491-506. (Article)
This article aims to produce an analysis of the politicization of the citizens after Spain’s Indignados movement from a citizenship framework. The article suggests that claiming the right to the city involves more than issues of access to urban amenities: it is also about claiming the right to participate in the formation and transformation of the city and the right to appropriate the city center. This positions these rights within the larger issue of citizenship by defining it as a collective practice rather than a state-sanctioned status. Our analysis is based on the empirical evidence derived from the semi-structured interviews, politicians’ speeches, information based on media resources and official websites, and participant observation during three months of fieldwork in Barcelona in 2016.

Ezgi Irgil (2016) Multi-level Governance as an Alternative: The Municipality of Barcelona and the Ciutat Refugi Plan. Glocalism: Journal of Culture, Politics, and Innovation 3. (Article)
This paper analyses the response of the Municipality of Barcelona to the Syrian refugee crisis in Europe as an alternative solution that challenges the national government’s restrictive approach. This response introduces the Ciutat Refugi Plan with a city-to-city network at the municipal level that involves other European cities in creating safe routes for refugees at the local government level. In line with multi-level governance theory, I argue that central governments’ inaction has pressured local governments to take action during the Syrian refugee influx. Relying on the influence of local government networks, the Municipality of Barcelona uses discourse as a tool of action in opening discursive spaces for humanitarian political responses to the refugee crisis. Using critical discourse analysis, I test this argument by examining in-depth interviews, speeches of people in power that have appeared in news articles, and statements on official websites.

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