Sara Kalm

Sara Kalm

Senior lecturer

Personal profile


Political Science 

Main research areas 

  • International migration
  • Citizenship
  • International institutions
  • Social movements


I am an associate professor in political science, and I teach and supervise at all levels. At the moment I mainly teach introduction to political science and democracy in theory and practice. I am also doctoral supervisor to Jana Canavan and Juliane Liebsch, assistant supervisor to Paulina Vaughn and third supervisor to Andreas Lundstedt (at the University of Gothenburg). Previously, I have been supervisor to Björn Östbring and assistant supervisor to Daniel Gustafsson. Beginning 2024, I am the Director of studies for the PhD program.

Research interests

I have been interested in migration and citizenship issues for more than two decades. I have approached these questions in several different ways. In my dissertation Governing Global Migration (2008), I analyzed discourses around labor migration in international organizations from a Michel Foucault-inspired perspective. Since then, I have devoted myself extensively to the historical development of immigration controls in various countries, particularly in relation to the welfare state and social policy. I have looked at this both from a Swedish national perspective and, together with colleagues, from an international comparative perspective. In another research context, I have concentrated on citizenship - how it is transformed in a time marked by migration, and especially how it mirrors and reinforces global inequality. Since 2023, I lead a VR-funded project on the role of corporations in the “citizenship industry”. Me and Magdalena Bexell are there investigating the tendency towards states “selling” citizenship and residency to the global elite in exchange for investment, in particular focusing on the role of firms.

I am also very interested in the role of transnational social movements and civil society organizations in international relations. This has, among other things, resulted in the monograph Civil Society and the Governance of Development: Opposing Global Institutions (together with Anders Uhlin, 2015) and the edited volume EU Civil Society: Patterns of Cooperation, Competition and Conflict (co-editor Håkan Johansson, 2015). I have also participated in the RJ-funded research program Civil Society Elites? where I and Anna Meeuwisse study the transnational mobilization of ultra-conservative “anti-gender movements”.


In recent years, I have become interested in the university as an organization and a workplace. Among other things, I have written and lectured on “academic housekeeping”, and I have until recently been the convener of the department's JLM group (gender equality, equal treatment, diversity). I am also one of the members of Lund University's Council for Ethics and Academic Freedom.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 1 - No Poverty
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

UKÄ subject classification

  • Political Science


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Collaborations the last five years

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