ARI Working Paper Series
WPS 256 Negotiated Citizenship through Civic Association: Contestations of Collective Empowerment among Filipino Irregular Migrants in Japan
Publisher : Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore
Publication Date : Feb / 2017
Author/Speaker: Anderson V. Villa
Keywords : negotiated citizenship, civic association, Irregular migration, Filipino migrants, Japan

This case study focuses on addressing the question, “How do non-state actors address the predicament of the irregular migrants’ precarious status?” The study reveals that an unwanted irregular migrant will certainly seek recognition, not necessarily from mainstream society but from peers, networks, and most of the time from compatriots – establishing links, and building contacts – and thus negotiated their status with the host society. This research also generated an alternative hypothesis which states, “As migration control becomes much stricter, more irregular migrants are seeking assistance from non-state actors and the migration industry.” This paper finds that the collaborative effort of migrant and non-migrant organizations between Filipino-run and Japanese-run NGOs at the local level (including church and non-church based groups) play an immensely indispensable role in sending a message across national boundaries that transnational migration agency (actors forming as collectivities) inadvertently reshapes a new world order for the global migration process.