Networking in contexts: qualitative social network analysis’ insights into migration processes.
How do migrants network in a particular social context? This question brings to the fore the role of time. I address it by analysing migrants’ networking practices before and after events that potentially alter the structures of opportunities and constraints of network (re)creation. Using qualitative social network analysis I examine migrants’ interactions and imagined opportunity spaces at two time periods. I draw on qualitative data from a study of Ukrainian migrant workers in Poland, focusing on the time before and after a dynamic increase in the number of Ukrainian migrants and the emergence of an anti-immigrant public discourse in Poland. Depending on the stability of their socio-economic status, migrants see this increase as leading to the shrinking work opportunities. They network in circles that are homogenous not only in terms of nationality, but also with respect to the moment of arrival, and so they redefine their networks’ boundaries.
Social Networks, Historical Time, Networking Practices, Ukrainian Migrant Workers, Qualitative Social Network Analysis