Aims & Objectives

Research Questions

This project seeks to ask two fundamental policy research questions:

  • How do migration control policies affect the plans and actions of prospective (and actual) irregular migrants?
  • Hence: why some policies are more successful than others?

We assume that migrants (and their households) are independent social agents. In formulating and executing their plans, urticaria
migrants interact with state actors and policies (of the destination and/or transit countries) as well as with non-state, local or transnational actors (NGOs, international organisations, smuggling networks, employers).

In order to answer the above two research questions we need to learn more about four empirical research questions:

(a)    how migrants make and change their plans and strategies for migrating despite legal restrictions at destination countries,

(b)   which are the actors (national, local or transnational, state or non-state) that affect their decision making and actions,

(c)    how do these actors affect the decision making of potential migrants, the making and changing of their plans and actions. Special importance is given to the role of giving/sharing/receiving information, as information about migration opportunities is crucial in shaping expectations and in organising the trip and arrival strategies of irregular migrants.

(d)   why specific actors are more effective than state policies in shaping migrants plans and decisions.

In investigating the above four questions and in answering the two more general policy related concerns stated above, the project aims to achieving a better understanding of the actors and factors that are involved in the governance of international irregular migration.

From a policy perspective, the project aims at a better understanding of

(a)    The actual aims of migration control policies

(b)   The effects that they have on (irregular) migrants decisions and actions – and on their livelihoods

(c)    And the missing links between the intended and actual effects of these policies:

In particular we shall ask:

  • Is the state still relevant in governing international irregular migration?
  • What are the other actors and factors that need to be integrated in establishing a successful regime of governance of irregular migration in Greece and also in Europe
  • What are the side-effects of irregular migration control as regards the risks involved for irregular migrants as well as their human rights. How can they be prevented and/or mitigated?