The Netherlands as immigration society

The Netherlands must draw conclusions from the fact that it has become an immigration society. Three principles are central to an immigration society: participation, individual responsibility and encounter. In its report The Netherlands as immigration society (Report no. 60, 2001), the WRR therefore calls for a government programme to promote the participation of immigrants and which is implemented and enforced consistently.

Social participation

This means that the policy should concentrate on the accessibility of Dutch institutions. Migrants themselves must also be willing to participate in employment and education and to invest in self-reliance and independence. The complete cultural adjustment and assimilation of newcomers is neither necessary nor desirable. Cultural diversity should be respected.

The social state

The Netherlands’ borders are no longer primarily geographical. Many people in an immigration society have multiple ties and loyalties. From that perspective, it is not defensible that they should have to renounce their original nationality in order to acquire Dutch nationality. The WRR therefore recommends that dual nationality should be formally accepted.