At an international conference by IMISCOE, the world's largest network of migration researchers, VUB researcher Iva Dodevska's study received an award. The annual Maria Ioannis Baganha Award is given to the best doctoral study in migration studies. Dodevska's award-winning study, titled "Europe and its Others: Migrant Integration in Research and Policy," explores the complex world of how societies govern how migrants are integrated into European societies.

Dodevska conducted an extensive analysis of research, policy, and media debates on integration, including policy-relevant scientific work performed within EU institutions. Her research critically examines the influence the EU has exerted on the integration policies of member states and the developments within those policies.

Her study reveals two main points: firstly, under the influence of the EU, the focus of member states' integration policies has increasingly shifted from migrants' rights to duties, with greater emphasis on security and identity issues than before. By framing integration as a European rather than a national problem, the EU has expanded its influence, relying heavily on research and evidence-based governance. Secondly, influenced by EU research, integration is approached in a highly technocratic manner, viewing migrants as individuals to be "measured" and "controlled" rather than addressing their human and societal needs.

Her research provides important insights for the Flemish government and the goals with which they shape their integration policies. To promote a more inclusive and fair society, policymakers need to recognize and address the underlying power dynamics and social inequalities that shape these policies.