Funding research projects on migration for a better crisis management

Migration research
EU-funded research projects can help to anticipate the migrant crisis.
Photo: Nicola Romagna

Migration has become an increasing issue for the stability of Europe, which is likely dominating the nowadays and future policy agendas. Financing targeted research projects on migration can help to anticipate the flows of migrants and to better manage the crisis.

Research have a role to play in the migration challenge Europe has been facing for months. In this respect, the DG for Research and Innovation organized a two-day conference on the 4th to the 5th of February 2016 in Brussels. It explored how European-funded research projects in the civil society can help policy makers in their work to design sustainable migration policies.

The conference adopted a crosscutting approach, featuring findings from social sciences and economic research alongside health care needs for migrants and the link with climate change. This lead to the necessity to identify nowadays the future research needs in that fields, as well on short and long term.

That is why the European Commission intends to hear the feedbacks from the CSO’s acting on the ground. The conference gathered for instance researchers in the field of migration, several coordinators from EU-funded research projects and national policy makers.

Identification of trends

It was discussed how research could have help to anticipate the current migration crisis. Are we able to foresee the flows of migrants? If so, could have been the crisis better managed.

As a result, it is now urgent to study the future migration trends and to decide what are the short, medium and long term research needs in the migration field. In the light of the researches carried among the civil society, the EU and its member States might be able to get a better picture of the whole migration crisis. In this regard, it becomes their role to accommodate the needs of research about migration.

A long term vision through research

The European Commission has therefore supported tens of research projects and actions on migration. For example, the Cascade project conducts a comprehensive analysis of the connections between security and democracy in the Caucasus. Funded by the European Commission with 2.488.450 € from 2014 to 2017, it supports the EU’s external policies in the region.

Migration is becoming more and more a crucial issue for Europe, which is progressively dominating the policy agendas. On the one hand, the recent inflows of asylum seekers have forced policymakers to manage this emergency.  On the other hand, a long term and coordinated response is needed for a better integration of the migrants. This is the reason why research on migration constitutes a part of the Seventh Framework Programme for Research (FP7). Socioeconomic sciences are consequently expected to provide a long term European vision based on reliable and comparable data.

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