Third-country nationals counselling as a prerequisite for their integration into society: A case of a Lithuanian region

Romas Prakapas, Dalia Prakapiene, Vladas Tumalavicius

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In recent years, Lithuania has observed a rapid increase in the number of third-country nationals (residents of countries other than the European Union (EU) or the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) member states). According to the Residents’ Register and the Aliens’ Register, residents of European countries constitute 77.8 percent of the total number of aliens living in Lithuania; however, the number of African and Asian residents is rapidly increasing. Therefore, it is important to facilitate incomers’ integration into society and to reduce the risk for social conflict between newcomers and the local communities. In such facilitation, purposeful and timely counselling provided to migrants is an issue of particular importance. Thus the aim of this article is to present the practice of Panevėžys Region in Lithuania in counselling third-country nationals in order to integrate them into the local community. The research included data analysis, interviews with the organizers of third-country nationals’ integration activities and the specialists who counselled third-country nationals, questionnaire survey of all the third-country nationals (N=49) who used the services of the Counselling Centre established by the Panevėžys Teacher Education Centreю
The findings showed that purposeful and timely counselling is an important factor in the integration of third-country nationals into the local communities. The areas of counselling most relevant to third-country nationals include dealing with personal documents, searching for a job and/or setting up a business, obtaining a Lithuanian residence permit and/or citizenship, day-to-day problems, car purchase, and travel. The research data show that counselling as such is useful and facilitates integration into the local communities. However, it was observed that the importance of direct counselling varies depending on the individual’s age, gender and length of residence in Lithuania. The respondents aged between 36 and 45 consider themselves those most successfully integrated into the local community. Integration into the local community is directly related to the command of the local language.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-20
JournalEconomisti : international scientific-analytical journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014



  • Third-country nationals
  • Integration
  • Lithuania

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