Stimulating Flexible Citizenship

The Impact of Dutch and Indian Migration Policies on the Lives of Highly Skilled Indian Migrants in the Netherlands


  • Katherine Kirk Universiteit Leiden, Netherlands
  • Ellen Bal Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands



transnational migration, Indian diaspora polices, citizenship, high-skilled migrants, Dutch knowledge migration policies (kennismigrantregeling), Indian migrants


This paper explores the relationship between migration and integration policies in the Netherlands, diaspora policies in India, and the transnational practices of Indian highly skilled migrants to the Netherlands. We employ anthropological transnational migration theories (e.g., Ong 1999; Levitt and Jaworsky 2007) to frame the dynamic interaction between a sending and a receiving country on the lives of migrants. This paper makes a unique contribution to migration literature by exploring the policies of both sending and receiving country in relation to ethnographic data on migrants. The international battle for brains has motivated states like the Netherlands and India to design flexible migration and citizenship policies for socially and economically desirable migrants. Flexible citizenship policies in the Netherlands are primarily concerned with individual and corporate rights and privileges, whereas Indian diaspora policies have been established around the premise of national identity.

Author Biographies

Katherine Kirk, Universiteit Leiden, Netherlands

Universiteit Leiden, Den Haag, Netherlands.

Ellen Bal, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands

Associate Professor, Social and Cultural Anthropology,  
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands.


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How to Cite

Kirk, Katherine, and Ellen Bal. 2021. “Stimulating Flexible Citizenship: The Impact of Dutch and Indian Migration Policies on the Lives of Highly Skilled Indian Migrants in the Netherlands”. Journal of Citizenship and Globalisation Studies 3 (1):1-13.