This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no 320294


Rights and obligations of citizens and non-citizens in selected countries (Deliverable 10.1)

July 31, 2014

This report derives from the work of partners involved in Work Package 10 of the FP7 programme bEUcitizen:  Utrecht University (The Netherlands); the University of Zagreb (Croatia); University College Dublin (Ireland); the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (Israel); the University of Oviedo (Spain) and the London School of Economics and the University of Oxford (UK).  The report explores the complex dynamics of insiders and outsiders, and their mutual dependence. For inclusion and exclusion are in practice seldom binaries, but marked by shades of difference, by differential inclusion and exclusion. WP10 focuses on the three key axes of mobility, naturalisation, and welfare benefits, all of which intersect to explore the ways in which ‘citizenship’ is both a legal and a normative status, that is, how formal in/exclusion is related to ideas of deservingness and ‘Good Citizenship’. This report explores the interactions of these axes and the differential in/exclusions that result via the six states under study, which enable us to examine EU15 (Ireland, Netherlands, UK, and Spain as a Southern EU state), new member (Croatia) and non-EU (Israel) states.


Access to state territory (mobility).

In EU member states hierarchies of entry are dependent upon citizenship status, wealth or skills except for those considered part of the diaspora understood as shared ethnicity/common descent (Croatia, Spain, Ireland), or religion (Israel: Law of Return). There is an evident move towards a knowledge-based economy and attracting the ‘brightest and the best’ across the EU, with resultant restricted access for family migration and lower skilled workers. Thus, access revolves around the management of the mobility of ‘the poor’, except where co-ethnicity/ religion provides access to ‘poor’ but in some cases this is curtailed by EU membership.


Access to citizenship (naturalisation)

Increasingly, in what has been termed the commodification of citizenship, citizenship is premised upon wealth and income, under the guise of ‘integration’. However, there is a difference between those for whom naturalisation is a prize and those for whom it is an entitlement. For those whose access to naturalisation is not shaped by ethnicity/diaspora, naturalisation is a ‘privilege’. In contrast, those whose access is shaped by ethnicity/diaspora often have facilitated naturalisation processes. Thus preferential access to citizenship is evident for some groups. Formal citizenship is an acknowledgment of a prior community.


Access to Social Security

European citizenship not only reinforces but extends the worker-citizen model: Work (effective and genuine) is increasingly a central requirement to access welfare for both citizens and EEA, save for those whose access is shaped by ethnicity/diaspora.



Differential inclusion and exclusion: EU nationals residing in an EU state of which they are not a citizen are not totally included – but, neither, necessarily, are nationals (e.g. Roma). Neither are TCNs totally excluded: e.g. TCNs with legal permanent residence have many of the rights of citizens (though not rights as EU nationals). A clear disjuncture between state and nation: for nations large populations are good and lend credibility; for states large populations are expensive. Concerns about the instrumental use of EU citizenship (access to work and benefits) have consequences for member states’ national social security and naturalisation policies.


Download the full report:

D10.1 Report on the rights and obligations of citizens and non-citizens in selected countries.