Mercator Dialogue on Asylum and Migration (MEDAM)

The European asylum and immigration system is in crisis: large numbers of refugees and migrants seek entry into the European Union leaving it to struggle with providing for their basic needs, distributing asylum applicants among EU member states, and efficiently integrating those who are allowed to stay into their host societies. Immigration from outside the EU has become one of the greatest concerns among European citizens.

At the same time, the EU recognizes that sustainable immigration from third countries will be crucial in alleviating demographic tensions, addressing labor shortages, and rendering the EU a more innovative region by 2020.

The Mercator Dialogue on Migration and Asylum (MEDAM) will help to de-emotionalize an often heated debate and provide a scientifically sound basis for decision making. The three-year research and consultation project aims to identify and close the gaps in existing research and to develop research-based solutions for asylum and immigration policies, addressing the most pressing concerns of policy makers from an independent European perspective.

The 2018 MEDAM Assessment Report Launch

Impressions from the launch of the 2018 MEDAM assessment report “Flexible Solidarity – A comprehensive strategy for asylum and immigration in the EU”.

The report was presented at the Global Solutions Summit in Berlin that brought together international think tank experts with policy makers and leaders from business and civil society.


  • Berlin, Florence, Brussels, Vienna, Budapest, and Warsaw: In recent weeks, MEDAM researchers have travelled extensively to discuss the conclusions of the 2018 MEDAM Assessment Report—as dialogue with all EU member states remains crucial to reimagine the EU asylum system and overcome the current deadlock.

    Read more …

  • Although fewer irregular migrants enter the EU now than in 2015 and 2016, there are important shortcomings in the EU’s external border management and refugee protection systems. Several inter-connected policies need to be pursued simultaneously and vigorously, in a spirit of flexible solidarity among EU member states. In the 2018 MEDAM Assessment Report, we set out a comprehensive strategy for EU asylum and immigration policies that is both politically feasible and effective. Read the full report here.

  • Their lack of integration of migrant women into the labor market is not only a story of lost opportunity at the individual level, but also carries important macroeconomic implications. Mikkel Barslund and Nadzeya Laurentsyeva on the need to integrate migrant women.

    Read the commentary here (external link).


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