International Conference

ReMIGRA: Return Migration as an
Interdisciplinary Research Area

June 23/24/25, 2022

Opening 02:00 p.m.

Palais Claudiana, Herzog-Friedrich-Straße 3, A-6020 Innsbruck



Thursday, June 23, 2022
02:00 to 02:30 p.m. Opening
Ingrid Böhler, Head of Department of Contemporary History,
University of Innsbruck, Austria

Dirk Rupnow, Dean of the Faculty of Philosophy and History,
University of Innsbruck, Austria

Project Leaders:
Eva Pfanzelter (Innsbruck, Austria)
Andrea Di Michele (Bolzano/Bozen, Italy)
02:30 to 03:30 p.m. Panel 1: Voices of (Return-)Migration
Chair: Andrea Di Michele (Bolzano/Bozen, Italy)

A Survey on Re-Migrations in Sicily between 1955 and 1965: Notes for a Mentalities History
Francesca Frisone (Messina, Italy)

About Emigrating and Returning: Five Examples from the Aosta Valley (IN ITALIAN)
Alessandro Celi (Aosta, Italy)
03:30 to 04:00 p.m. Coffee Break
04:00 to 05:30 p.m. Panel 2: The African Experiences
Chair: Eric Burton (Innsbruck, Austria)

The End of the World as We Know It: Framing Settlers’ Return to Italy in the Current International Debate (IN ITALIAN)
Emanuele Ertola (Pavia, Italy)

A Work Experience: Narratives of Colonial Past in Post-Colonial Italy (IN ITALIAN)
Alessandro Pes (Cagliari, Italy)

Returning Moroccan Migrants and the Image of International Emigration to Europe (IN ENGLISH)
Abdallah Zouhairi (Casablanca, Morocco)
05:30 to 06:00 p.m. Break
06:00 to 07:30 p.m

Round Table - 10 minutes short presentations and discussion
Chair: Wolfgang Meixner (IN ENGLISH)

Return Migration, Welfare, and the French-Luxembourg Borderlands after the First World War
Machteld Venken (Luxembourg, Luxembourg)

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This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement
No 882549).

Processes and dynamics of social cohesion in remigration studies
Massimiliano Livi (Trier, Germany)

Return Migration as an Interdisciplinary Research Area Using the Example of the South Tyrolean “Return Option“
Eva Pfanzelter (Innsbruck, Austria)

from 08:00 p.m. Conference Dinner

  Friday, June 24, 2022
09:00 to 10:30 a.m. Panel 3: The Value of Numbers
Chair: Andrea Di Michele (Bolzano/Bozen, Italy)

Returnees from Work Abroad to Serbia: Full Suitcases of Capital(s)? (IN ENGLISH)
Miloš Milovanović (Budapest, Hungary)

Italian “golondrinas“ Migrants between the Late 19th and Early 20th Century: An Empirical Verification (IN ITALIAN)
Stefano Gallo (Naples/Pisa, Italy)

A Historical Atlas of the “South Tyrolean Return Option“ (IN ENGLISH)
Valerio Larcher (Bolzano/Bozen, Italy)
10:30 to 11:00 a.m. Coffee Break
11:00 to 12:00 a.m. Panel 4: Aspects of Trans-Remigration
Chair: Valerio Larcher (Bolzano/Bozen, Italy)

“Voluntary“ return instead of deportation?! A social work perspective on the return of refugees in Germany (IN GERMAN)
Claudia Olivier-Mensah (Mainz, Germany)

In Search of Family Roots: Genealogical Tourism (IN ITALIAN)
Cinzia Buccianti (Siena, Italy) and Martina Semboloni (Pisa, Italy)
12:00 to 02:00 p.m. Individual Lunch Break
02:00 to 03:30 p.m. Panel 5: Transatlantic return migration
Chair: Verena Hechenblaikner (Innsbruck, Austria) and Giada Noto (Bolzano/Bozen, Italy)

The Harbour of Hamburg as Bottleneck: Infrastructures of Trans-Atlantic Return Migration around 1900 (IN ENGLISH)
Agnes Gehbald (Bern, Switzerland)

“Oh Great America, Oh Beloved Mountains“ Return Migration from the United States to the Modenese Apennines: A Research of Oral History (IN ITALIAN)
Marco Moschetti (Bologna, Italy)

Narratives of Italian Transatlantic Remigration, 1898 to 1936 (IN ENGLISH)
Lorella Viola (Luxembourg, Luxembourg)
03:30 to 04:00 p.m. Coffee Break
04:00 to 06:00 p.m. Panel 6: Aspects of the South Tyrolean Re-Option
Chair: Eva Pfanzelter (Innsbruck, Austria)

Return Option in Kanaltal/Valcanale/Kanalska dolina (IN ITALIAN)
Giada Noto (Bolzano/Bozen, Italy)

The Decision-Making Process and Re-Option of the South Tyrolean Optants from the Perspective
of Contemporary Witnesses
Ivan Stecher (Innsbruck, Austria)

Border traffic between North Tyrol and South Tyrol after World War II (IN GERMAN)
Verena Hechenblaikner (Innsbruck, Austria)

Symbolic Policy-Making and Economic Aspects of Return Migration: The South Tyrolean Example
Sarah Oberbichler (Innsbruck, Austria)



  Saturday, June 25, 2022
09:00 a.m. to
13:00 p.m.
Internal Workshop
ReMIGRA-Team, Visitors welcome!
6th Floor, Gewi-Tower, University of Innsbruck, Innrain 52, A-6020 Innsbruck


  Book of Abstracts of the conference for download.


Cooperation partners

A project of the Department of Contemporary History of the University of Innsbruck in cooperation with the Faculty of Education of the Free University of Bozen-Bolzano in Brixen.

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Project funded by




Conference supported by





Department of Contemporary History
University of Innsbruck
Innrain 52d
A-6020 Innsbruck




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