Developing EU immigration and asylum policy: thinking laterally and adding value

Elizabeth Collett, Migration Policy Institute Europe

The march toward a common, EU-level immigration and asylum policy has been significant. Since the 1999 Tampere European Council, the establishment and continuous expansion of the Schengen area and the Common European Asylum System have been signal achievements, as well as less tangible outcomes, including the establishment of a common policy ‘language’ on immigration within EU institutions, and mutual understanding between the Member States themselves.

The current five-year programme, however, is widely considered to have been less effective than its predecessors. This is only partly the result of its content and design; a number of internal (within the EU) and external factors have also interfered with achieving the Stockholm Programme’s policy ambitions. The global recession, the Arab Spring, the Lisbon Treaty’s effect on EU decision-making, and shifting national priorities have all called into question whether the format and scope of the JHA five-year programme is still the most appropriate and effective tool to manage today’s challenges. What are the challenges still facing future development of EU policy on immigration and asylum and how might they be overcome? What institutional arrangements might be considered to improve the quality, content and effectiveness of future policy proposals, and how can the European Commission demonstrate the added value of EU policy to beleaguered Member States?

About the speaker
Elizabeth Collett is Director of Migration Policy Institute Europe and Senior Advisor to MPI's Transatlantic Council on Migration. She is based in Brussels, and her work focuses in particular on European migration and immigrant integration policy.

Date: 21 May 2014

Time: 12:30 - 13:30


UNU-MERIT