Six unique research experiences were shared around the topic of ‘Methods of collecting and preserving migration narratives through the experience of “potential migrants’.

The session was hosted by the Al Akhawayn University in Ifrane (Morocco) the last June and its protagonist were six ITHACA researchers and three experts from our sister projects Opportunities and Bridges.

The meeting was opened by Blanca Garces (Barcelona Centre for International Affairs, Spain) and Omar N. Cham (Brussels School of Governance, Belgium), who talked about Potential migrants’ master narratives on migration to Europe. Insights from the Horizon 2020 BRIDGES project, Assessing the production and impact of migration narratives.

Michel Debruyne (, Belgium) explained how “Connecting stories” can foster a fair dialogue, if researchers and communicators don’t just speak “of”, but “with” migrants. This different mode of facing migrant narratives liberates their protagonists from a passive role and tends to counter existing narrative patterns and templates.

Catherine Therrien (Al Akhawayn University) shared her research on “Ethnographic Challenges: Giving Voice and Making Visible sub-Saharan invisibilized women migrants”, while Catherine Phipps (University College Oxford, Great Britain) reported the results and reflections on  “Experiences of interdisciplinary approaches to marriage migration research”. Finally, Kenza Oumlil (Al Akhawayn University) talked about Media Texts in Movement: Unearthing Narratives of Sub-Saharan Women Migrants in Morocco”.

These sessions were followed by the parallel working groups, facilitated by the by the Al Akhawayn University staff: “Ethnographic Challenges” (Catherine Therrien, Principal investigator); “Historical and interdisciplinary approach” (Catherine Phipps); and “Media Texts in Movement” (Kenza Oumlil).

The contents of this training session will be available as a MOOC from the next November 2023.