E.g., 07/01/2023
E.g., 07/01/2023
German Public Opinion on Immigration and Integration
October 2009

German Public Opinion on Immigration and Integration

Germany has de facto been receiving immigrants for the last four decades, but the government only began actively dealing with the long-term impact of immigration a decade ago. This is partly because Germany has perceived immigration as a temporary phenomenon for a long time. Since the 1990s, Germany shifted away from stemming flows to recognizing its identity as a country of immigration and managing the impact of immigration on society.

The policy shift is partly due to steadily declining immigration to Germany. More importantly, this shift is fueled by the German government’s realization that policies must foster integration among immigrants who have been living there for many years, some of whom were born in Germany. Immigrants and their descendants comprise nearly one-fifth of Germany’s population, a share that is expected to increase in the future. Integration is therefore an important policy concern that will have a strong impact on Germany's future.

Table of Contents 

I.Executive Summary

II. Immigration to Germany:  A Temporary Phenomenon Becomes Permanent

III. Regulating Integration

IV. Citizenship Reform

V. The Immigration Act of 2005: A Milestone in Immigration Policy

VI. Attitudes Toward Immigrants

VII. Public Opinion on Immigrant Integration

VIII. Conclusion