Journeys to Europe: the role of policy in migrant decision-making
by Dr. Jessica Hagen-Zanker (Overseas Development Institute)
Abstract: With more than a million migrants reaching Europe, 2015 has become known as the year of Europe’s migration crisis. The persistence and intensification of crises in other parts of the world fuelled the largest movement of migrants and refugees into Europe since World War II. With some exceptions, the European response has been guided by strategies of containment, restriction and deterrence. Rather than welcoming, settling and integrating the new arrivals, many EU member states have tried to drive them away from their borders through an escalation of restrictive migration policies designed to stop people coming in the first place. This presentation will look at the journeys made by migrants. Based on in-depth interviews with more than 50 migrants, refugees and asylum seekers who have recently arrived in four European cities (Berlin, London, Madrid and Manchester), it explores: the journeys migrants take; the factors that drive them; and the capacity of destination country migration policies to influence people’s decisions, both before their journey begins and along the way.
Speaker biography: Jessica Hagen-Zanker is a Research Fellow in Social Protection Programme at ODI. Her main research interests lie in social protection and migration and the use of quantitative methods in social protection analysis. She has extensive experience in the analysis of social protection programmes and policies, migration, remittances, design and analysis of household surveys in low-income countries, quasi-experimental impact evaluations and developing and executing rigorous, evidence-based literature reviews.