Skip to main content
The Complexities of Measuring Naturalization Rates in Advanced Industrialized Countries
Comparative European Politics (2013)
  • Thomas Janoski, University of Kentucky
To acquire, protect and promote their rights and interests, aliens naturalize, marry or are born into citizenship in Westernized countries. This article examines how much major receiving countries (that is, 18 countries from Europe, America, Australasia and Japan) accept foreigners as citizens into their societies over 35 years. This involves five issues about measuring naturalization rates and other assessments of nationality: (i) measuring the number of people who go through the naturalization process to become citizens (a narrow focus); (ii) measuring the number of people who are born of foreign parents and gain nationality through jus soli rules (a wide focus); (iii) determining the categorization of naturalization for foreigners who have special integration privileges; (iv) specifying the base upon which naturalization should be standardized – stocks of foreign population, stocks of foreign-born population or the population as a whole; and (v) considering other rates that may measure citizen integration (for example, rejection, cohort and group-specific rates). The main controversy involves whether researchers want a concept of naturalization that stays narrowly focused on a strictly definable process or a concept that opens up more widely to all the ways that immigrants become citizens.
  • sociology,
  • comparative public policy,
  • immigration and naturalization,
  • citizenship,
  • comparative methodology
Publication Date
September, 2013
Citation Information
Thomas Janoski. "The Complexities of Measuring Naturalization Rates in Advanced Industrialized Countries" Comparative European Politics Vol. 11 Iss. 5 (2013)
Available at: