Project Details


Migration historians have demonstrated how migration entailed more than movement from A to B, but have had difficulties getting a grasp on all aspects of mobility. Especially quantification and the analysis of changes in patterns over time have proved difficult. This project proposes to approach migration from a transit perspective, focusing on migrants en route. The qualitative approach on transit migration infrastructure challenges and provides new insights to existing categorisations (defining migrants from more temporary to more permanent) as well as the predominant binary focus on origin and
host societies. Transit infrastructure is interpreted here as the transport and accomodation structures facilitating migration as well as the administrative scaffolding within which this took place. Focusing on the changes between 1780 and 1870 by means of case studies on Leiden (water), Mechelen (rail) and Liège (road), this project analyses to what extent, how and why transit migration infrastructures changed. It scrutinises the supposed increased state and business intervention in mobility, as well as the continuity and discontinuity between the early modern period and the nineteenth centry. Using GIS mapping methods, this project combines crucial
debates of migration, travel and transport history and combines them in a new research agenda.
Effective start/end date1/10/1931/03/23


  • migration history
  • mobility

Flemish discipline codes in use since 2023

  • Early modern history
  • Geography of mobility and transportation
  • Socio-economic history
  • Regional and urban history
  • Modern and contemporary history


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