Unsettled Transitions to ‘Adulthood': Young Migrants' Experiences of Future, Self, and Wellbeing in the UK

Thursday, 14 July 2016: 14:45
Location: Hörsaal I (Neues Institutsgebäude (NIG))
Oral Presentation
Elaine CHASE, University of Oxford, United Kingdom
Francesca MELONI, University of Oxford, United Kingdom
Previous work has shown that young people subject to immigration control frequently draw a link between their own subjective wellbeing and whether or not they have a projected sense of self within a clear future trajectory (Allsopp, et al. 2014; Chase 2013). Drawing on in-depth narrative interviews, this paper examines the meanings and associations of wellbeing linked to futures for unaccompanied minors, as they transition to ‘adulthood’ within the UK asylum and welfare systems. The paper further explores the relationships young people draw between intentions for their future, notions of imagined self, and their subjective wellbeing in transition.  By  demonstrating the  multiple, complex and dynamic transitions that young people encounter and respond to as they become ‘adult’ within the migratory project, the paper  unsettles the dominant theories of youth transitions linked to human capital development and critically engages with the methodological and ethical challenges of conceptualizing wellbeing in ‘transition.’