European migration policy

Our focal topic in 2017/2018

“No Member State can effectively address migration alone. It is clear that we need a new, more European approach […]. All actors: Member States, EU institutions, International Organisations, civil society, local authorities and third countries need to work together to make a common European migration policy a reality.” (European Commission, 13.05.2015)

The surge since 2014 in the number of people who for different reasons come to Europe and wish to make a life for themselves here is posing major challenges for the migration, asylum and refugee policy of the EU and its Member States. Indeed these challenges are too great and wide-ranging to be addressed on a national level alone, which is why a central role must be played by the European level.

Since the Member States are affected to very different extents by migration flows and because national interests dominate the public debate, the EU often appears incapable of action and lacking in solidarity. It is not least for this reason that Euro-sceptics are able to successfully incorporate this agenda into their – in some cases right-wing nationalist –programmes. These parallel developments are jeopardizing Europe’s ability to act and cohesion.

“We Europeans will never return to the kind of EU policy that was possible prior to 2015. The refugee crisis has revealed differences that had long been ignored. There is this West-East divide: from the outset, half of the EU’s countries refused to take any refugees”, says Bulgarian political scientist and thought leader Ivan Krastev.

A lack so far of any overarching forums

Europe so far lacks any overarching forums in the areas of science, politics and civil society in which participants could systematically consider a common approach to migration and develop possible solutions.

This is why, together with our partners and our network, we wish to develop approaches for a substantial and common European migration policy that is rooted in the notions of cohesion and an ability to act.


A press release of Dahrendorf Forum

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