Corporate sector engagement in contemporary ‘crises’: The case of refugee integration in Germany

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Refugee integration is one of the main global challenges of the present, at a time when the corporate sector is regarded as a key actor in multi-stakeholder partnerships through the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This paper examines its role as a partner of the state in addressing the movement of refugees into Germany from 2015 onwards. Based on interview data and informal conversations with members of Wir Zusammen, an integration initiative, and supplemented by a review of business reports and media documentation, it discusses the multifaceted engagements by parts of the corporate sector in Germany with refugee integration. These are analysed as ‘thin’ and ‘thick’, and as following different institutional logics. The paper adds to understanding of the political dimensions of corporate responses, their potential to challenge the status quo, and their pitfalls. Ultimately, it argues that corporate involvement with humanitarian and development challenges works best when
embedded locally and is context specific.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)972-994
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 19 May 2023


  • global development
  • corporate sector
  • corporate social responsibility
  • refugees
  • integration
  • Germany

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Global inequalities


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