The Thinking Lab on Migration & Integration is dealing with one of the most crucial challenges the European Union is currently facing. The Lab is trying to get a truly European view on this matter, benefiting from the diversity of experiences between countries such as Germany which is dealing now with a wave of refugees coming from Syria, and countries like Portugal, which relies on an experience of centuries of migration. The concept of “people on the move” instead of only “refugee” or “migrant” is also in the center of the debate.
Claudia Pedra, Director of the Network for Strategic and International Studies, comments on the way Portugal deals with the refugee crisis. Even in a country with one of the best asylum laws worldwide, integration and tolerance seem to remain problematic issues.
During the second Thinking Lab Summit in Paris, Orange Magazine spoke to Patrícia Lisa and Ilias Antoniou about Migration & Integration. Here are their opinions.
The Thinking Lab on Migration & Integration focuses on one of the most crucial challenges currently faced by the European Union. Within one year, based on the diverse experiences Southern European countries and Germany have so far gathered, the Lab will deliver a genuine European perspective on migration and integration policy. The concept of “people on the move” rather than “refugees” or “migrants” remains the center of the debate.
Cas Mudde is one of the most renowned experts on political extremism and populism in Europe. He is Associate Professor of International Affairs at the University of Georgia and Researcher at the Center for Research on Extremism at the University of Oslo. In his interview for ‘Dialogue on Europe’ he talks about the structural reasons behind the rise of populist movements all over Europe, the failure of the traditional parties and why tax havens, unlike migration issues, are not part of the political agenda.
In 2015, almost one million asylum-seekers came to Germany and the country still has to cope with the repercussions of this development – in social, political and economic terms. Yet, migration and integration is not a new phenomenon to Germany. In this interview, Meike Behrends, an expert on European migration policy talks about the historic development of migration in Germany and how the country’s integration approach has changed during the last decades.
Long considered as an emigration country, Greece started receiving immigrants in the 90’s. Over the last few years, the country had to deal with huge number of newcomers and despite the engagement of the social society, it doesn’t have the means to properly assist them. Greek authorities repeatedly asked for the support of the other European member states, which are reluctant to take responsibility.
Marie-Laure Basilien-Gainche comments on the way France and Europe fail to deal with the so-called “refugee crisis”. If some improvement have been achieved, in particular regarding the relocation system, integration remains a major issue, even for second or third-generation immigrants.
In this interview for #DialogueOnEurope, Valentina Fabbri highlights flaws and particularities of the Italian system and its effects on refugees living in various capacities in Italy, comparing these to the European context.
The interview was conducted with Christina Faraco. She has studied Political Science and Sociology at the Complutense University of Madrid and is living in Germany since 1998, where she has been working on research projects on the field of migration (European Migration Center). Since 2009 Christina was responsible for different mobility projects and in 2013 founded “La Red e.V.“, an association supporting new immigrants in Berlin. Currently she works at the Competence Center of Immigration of “Minor – Projektkontor für Bildung und Forschung e.V.”.