Bordering mobilities: The case of Russian trans-border second-home ownership in Finland

Authors: Olga Hannonen*,
Topics: Political Geography, Tourism Geography, Russia
Keywords: mobility regime, mobility, bordering, second home, Russians, Finland
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/5/2019
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Roosevelt 4.5, Marriott, Exhibition Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

Trans-border second-home ownership is a growing mobility trend in different parts of the world. This paper employs both a mobilities and border perspective through the concept of mobility regime in considering Russian second-home mobility in Finland. Mobility regime is a combination of unequal regulatory mobility frameworks towards different categories of people. National borders are evident regulators of flows and tools of the mobility regime which shapes human mobility across them. Policies and specific regulations towards different nationals and travelers that restrict mobilities are also a part of the mobility regime.
The case of Russian second-home ownership in Finland indicates the fluid nature of the mobility regime. Russian second home mobility across the Finnish-Russian border is restricted by the length of stay imposed by the visa regime. Russian land ownership in Finland is also constantly contested at different levels, ranging from negative publicity, uneasy attitudes among locals to legislative initiatives. Moreover, the Ukrainian conflict in 2014 has brought significant changes to Russian second-home mobilities in Finland, leading to the expansion of the mobility regime on both sides of the border.
Interviews with Russian second-home owners and real estate agents in Finland conducted in 2017, as well as various policy documents compose the empirical material for this paper. The application of the mobility regime concept to the empirical case theoretically frames the study and elaborates the consept itself. The employment of the concepts contributes to scientific debates on the notion of bordering and mobility.

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