Integration Mapping of Refugee and Migrant Children in Schools and other Experiential Environments in Europe

This four year multi-partner H2020 project will explore the integration of refugee and migrant children in primary and secondary schools, based on quantitative and qualitative research with young people, teachers and key policy stakeholders. IMMERSE aims to enhance the socio-educative inclusion of all refugee and migrant children through the generation of new data and policy recommendations. A dashboard of socioeducational indicators on inclusion will be developed as one of the key outputs of the project.

Aims and objectives

The IMMERSE project sets out to:

  • develop new socio-educational indicators of integration and map the integration of migrant and refugee children in education in Europe. 
  • develop a set of recommendations on the integration of refugees and migrant children in Europe.
Project implementation
  • The project will involve children and key stakeholders to identify the key parameters related to intercultural competences, wellbeing and gender affecting children’s integration and will co-create a new dashboard of social and educational integration indicators.
  • A database and an App will be developed within the project, IMMERSE researchers will collect and monitor data related to those indicators from children age 6-18 years old children in 6 European countries (Belgium, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy and Spain).
  • In addition, best practices of integration at local level will be identified through the process and its advancement and replication will be promoted.

The IMMERSE project is coordinated by Professor Mercedes Fernandez, Comillas University, Madrid. UCC is one of 11 European partners including Save the Children Italy; Panteion University of Social and Political Studies, Greece and DOZ International in Germany. Further information can be found on the IMMERSE consortium website:

Project Outputs & Events
Martin, S., Horgan, D., O’Riordan, J. & Maier, R.  (2023) ' Refugee and migrant children’s views of integration and belonging in school in Ireland – and the role of micro- and meso-level interactions',  International Journal of Inclusive Education.  DOI: 10.1080/13603116.2023.2222304
Horgan, D., Martin, S., O’Riordan, J. & Maier, R. (2021) ‘Supporting languages: The socio-educational integration of migrant and refugee children and young people’,  Children & Society
Horgan, Deirdre; Martin, Shirley (2021) 'Children's research advisory groups: Moving from adult-research agendas to co-creation with children' In: Deirdre Horgan and Danielle Keenan (eds).   Child and Youth Participation in Policy, Practice and Research . London: Routledge.


Martin, S., O’Riordan, J., Horgan, D., Maier, R., Marouda, M.D., Koutsouraki, E. and Farakouki, L. (2021) Report on Psycho-social and Wellbeing of Refugee and Migrant Children. IMMERSE Working Paper 3.

Conference Presentations:

IMMERSE Conference (15 September, 2023) This conference presented the findings from the Irish component of the IMMERSE project. 

Shirley Martin, Reana Maier, Deirdre Horgan, Jacqui O’Riordan (2022) IMMERSE children and young people's advisory group: Co-constructors and advisors. [Oral Presentation],  Child Migration And Integration. Trends & Challenges , Ljubljana, Slovenia , 02-JUN-22 - 04-JUN-22.
Horgan, D. O'Riordan, J. Maeir, R. & Martin, S. (2021) Immerse H2020 socio-educational integration of Migrant Children in Education, Research findings from Phase 1 of the study. [Oral Presentation], Society for the History of Children and Youth XI Biennial International Conference, Galway, Ireland , 23-JUN-21 - 25-JUN-21
Deirdre Horgan, Reana Maier, Jacqui O'Riordan and Shirley Martin (2021) The role of Education in breaking down borders and building inclusive societies for migrant children. [Oral Presentation], Contemporary Childhood Conference, online , 06-SEP-21 - 09-SEP-21.
Maeir, R. Horgan, D. O'Riordan, J. & Martin, S. (2021) International Migration Research Network Europe. [Oral Presentation], 18th IMISCOE Annual Conference, Luxembourg (online) , 07-JUL-21 - 09-JUL-21.
Reana Maier, Deirdre Horgan, Jacqui O'Riordan, Shirley Martin (2020) Mapping the Integration of Migrant and Refugee Children: Co-creating Indicators of Integration. [Oral Presentation], Educational Studies Association of Ireland (ESAI) Conference 2020, Online 
Martin, S. and O’Riordan, J. Horgan, D. and Maier, R. (2019) IMMERSE: Mapping the Educational Integration of Migrant and Refugee Children in Europe: Co-creating Indicators of Integration. [Invited Lectures (Conference)], RESPOND Conference: Unpacking the challenges and possibilities for migration governance, Newham College, University of Cambridge , 17-OCT-19 - 19-OCT-19.


IMMERSE Webinar Series: 'Supporting Migrant Children’s Educational Access and Participation'. This webinar series offers an opportunity to showcase national and international best practices identified by the Irish Research Team, and provides an opportunity to share the learning and insights gleaned through them. 

Recordings are available at the following links:

Project Funder & Duration

IMMERSE is funded by Horizon 2020 from 2018-2023.

Project team

Dr. Shirley Martin (PI); Dr. Deirdre Horgan; Dr. Jacqui O'Riordan; Dr Reana Maier (Post-doctoral researcher)


Institute for Social Science in the 21st Century (ISS21)

Top Floor, Carrigbawn/Safari Building, Donovan Road, Cork, T12 YE30