Timothy Hatton, 17 December 2021

Refugees from conflicts in Yemen, Syria, Iraq, and many other countries travel thousands of miles seeking a new life in Europe. But how likely are these refugees to be recognised as asylum seekers, and does it matter in which country they apply? Tim Hatton tells Tim Phillips that, despite efforts to standardise the process of granting asylum, there are still big differences in recognition rates across Europe.

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Hatton, T. 2021. 'Asylum Recognition Rates in Europe: Persecution, Policies and Performance'. CEPR

Timothy Hatton, 19 November 2021

Less than half of all applicants for political asylum in Europe gain some form of recognition that allows them to stay. Since the early 2000s, the EU has developed a common asylum policy with the aims of protecting the rights of refugees and mitigating the ‘asylum lottery’.  This column shows that the implementation of EU Directives contributed modestly to an overall increase in average recognition rates but has not reduced the variation in rates across countries.

Xavier Devictor, Quy-Toan Do, Andrei Levchenko, 20 February 2021

It is usually observed that countries neighbouring a conflict area end up accommodating the largest numbers of refugees often for very long periods of time. Using data on worldwide bilateral refugee stocks from 1987-2017 compiled by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, this column examines the spatial distribution of refugees and its evolution over time. It finds that while most refugees still remain in a country neighbouring their country of origin, the past decades have seen a trend towards greater geographic diffusion.

Alessandra Casarico, Giovanni Facchini, Tommaso Frattini, 28 June 2018

European countries have recently experienced an extraordinary inflow of asylum seekers. Using a theoretical framework and US data, this column studies the key economic triggers which prompt policymakers to implement immigration legalisation programmes. It shows that the more restricted the occupational opportunities of undocumented immigrants and the smaller the fiscal leakage to undocumented immigrants via the welfare state, the more desirable an amnesty is. 

Scott Baker, Nicholas Bloom, Steven Davis, 15 December 2015

The recent influx of refugees to Europe has stoked security fears and created anxiety about the social and economic consequences. This column provides new quantitative indicators for the intensity of migration-related fears and policy uncertainty, based on newspaper articles. The indices are presented for the US, UK, France, and Germany, and extend back to 1995. They show that recent levels of concern and uncertainty in European countries about migration are unprecedented. 

Timothy Hatton, 14 July 2011

Asylum is a controversial and politically fraught topic. For the people involved it can be a matter of life or death. This column introduces a new CEPR report arguing that it is high time the EU adopts an integrated policy on asylum based on historical insight, quantitative evidence, and a realistic view of the politics involved.

Timothy Hatton, 14 July 2011

CEPR's newest report tackles the thorny policy questions surrounding asylum seeking. The author argues that policy towards asylum seekers should take into account history, evidence, and a realistic view of the political economy of asylum policy. The report argues for a more centralised European asylum system and for a range of specific policy reforms.

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