hat tip-Esther-Islam in Europe

Muslims in EU Cities



 background research reports on Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden

EUMAP is currently conducting a monitoring project focusing on selected neighbourhoods in eleven cities in the European Union (EU) with significant Muslim populations.

The research looks in particular at the way in which municipal and national authorities address the challenges relating to integration in European cities. How do they counter growing social, political and economic tensions? To what extent do they consider the needs of Muslims and consult and involve them in key decision making?

The study explores the diversity amongst the Muslim communities, and also seeks to identify shared concerns of all sampled groups of residents in the city, regardless of ethnic or religious background.

The final reports will offer new and original data to policy makers and advocates, and will include specific and constructive recommendations addressed to relevant municipalities, national and international governments and bodies, as well as communities of the EU, including Muslim communities.

The project is carried out in cooperation with local experts, academics and civil society organizations. It follows up on previous EUMAP reports addressing the situation of Muslims:

Individual city reports, as well as a regional overview, will be released starting from late 2008. Regular updates about the project and related issues will be posted on this website.

Download the project leaflet! (Now also in German, French, Dutch, Danish, Swedish, Turkish and Arabic translation.)

Preliminary phase (2006-2007): Background research reports

A preliminary phase of the current project was initiated in May 2006 and completed in October 2007. That phase resulted in a series of background research reports on the situation of Muslim communities in seven EU countries, based on a comprehensive review of the existing literature.

The background research reports facilitated the selection of cities to include in the monitoring project, and the preparation of the methodology for the monitoring. These background research reports themselves were prepared by experts from each of the selected countries and based on a common methodology. They include an annex of relevant recent literature (from 1996 on), whether in English or other languages.

You can download the background research reports from this site, as well as a background and methodology document. Read more…

Muslims in EU Cities: Social cohesion, participation and identity

About 20 million Muslims reside today within the EU. Citizens and migrants, Muslims in Europe form a varied and growing population group.

Although the overall Muslim population in each EU country remains relatively limited in numbers (not more than 10 percent in any European country), most Muslims in the EU live in large or capital cities and are a visible and significant presence.

Particularly following the New York, Madrid and London attacks, Muslim communities in Europe are undergoing an unprecedented scrutiny. At the same time, there is also growing official acknowledgment of the prejudice and discrimination Muslims experience, as well as indications of severe levels of social and economic disadvantage.

This complex situation presents Europe with one of its greatest challenges today: how to effectively ensure equal rights and social cohesion in a climate of political tensions and rapidly expanding diversity?

The monitoring project Muslims in EU Cities seeks to identify the challenges and successes in ensuring integration of Muslims in Europe. It emphasizes the experiences of Muslims at the local and neighbourhood level, the marker for belonging for many people, and seeks to draw attention to factors that have allowed certain local level initiatives to succeed.

Eleven Cities Monitored

• Antwerp (Belgium);
• Copenhagen (Denmark);
• Marseille and Paris (France);
• Berlin and Hamburg (Germany);
• Amsterdam and Rotterdam (the Netherlands);
• Stockholm (Sweden);
• Leicester and Waltham Forest – London (UK).

The eleven cities included in the monitoring were selected on the basis of the background research reports that were produced in 2007.

Further details about country selection

Further details about selection of cities

Focus of the Monitoring Reports

Each city report examines the experiences of ordinary Muslims, and explores local level initiatives that seek to address existing challenges, within the context of the wider city. The reports focus on the following key areas:

Identity, interactions and belonging: This section analyses the roles that ethnicity, nationality and religion play in defining identity, gender and generation differentials and whether policies have had an impact on how Muslims view themselves within their communities, countries and the EU.

Education: This section assesses the educational attainment and achievement levels of Muslims, including situations of discrimination, available provisions in the education system taking into account cultural and social particularities, and national and local initiatives to promote education and eliminate discrimination.

Employment: This section monitors the labour market position of Muslims, their employment, unemployment, concentration in particular sectors, and barriers that Muslims may face in employment.

Housing and Health, and social services provision: These sections focus on the position of Muslims and assesses the choices and main barriers that they may face in access to housing, health and social services in general.

Policing and security: This section highlights the position and experiences of Muslims in relation to the criminal justice system, including as victims of crime, as employees, and the possible impact of national anti-terror legislation on their neighbourhoods.

Citizenship and participation in civil and political life: This section analyses local level initiatives or policies addressing the extent to which Muslims feel they are able to influence decision at the local and national level; their participation in civil society, politics and policy making as well as of iany local initiatives that are inclusive of Muslims and address their needs.

The depiction of Muslim communities by the local media: This section studies the influence of the media and, in light of the scrutiny on Muslim communities, assesses the impact of the media’s stories regarding Muslims, subsequent perception of this community by the wider society and strategies to address certain media depictions of collectivism amongst Muslims.

Expected Results

The monitoring reports will:

  • Capture the experiences and analyse the situation and key concerns of Muslims and non-Muslims at the local and neighbourhood level in each of the eleven cities;
  • Provide limited statistical data through the use of interviews, questionnaires and focus groups in all eleven cities;
  • Assess the engagement of municipalities with their Muslim citizens and the level of consultation and participation in key decision making afforded to them whilst also attempting to understand the degree of cohesion amongst Muslim communities;
  • Examine current initiatives and policies in place, the extent to which they are succeeding and/or failing the integration of Muslims locally, and promote the adoption of national strategies which include all groups within the Muslim communities;
  • Offer specific and constructive recommendations directed at bringing about change where needed. The recommendations will be addressed to the relevant municipalities and national governments as well as to the EU and other European and international bodies. The recommendations included in the overview will identify cross cutting issues more generally relevant in ensuring an improved integration of the EU’s Muslim citizens.


Review the methodology section to find more information about the selection of countries and cities, as well as the project’s methodology document, which includes an overview of the aims of the study, guidelines on undertaking the field research, and the report template. This section also provides the names of the international expert advisory board to the project.

For further information on the Muslims in EU cities project contact Nazia Hussain, Project Director, at eumuslims AT eumap.org or Miriam Anati, Advocacy and Communications, at manati AT osieurope.org.

Selected resources

Review recommended websites, related eumap.org Journal Features, and selected documents from the eumap.org Library.

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