Drivers of Migration

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EU policy-makers have no control over the situation caused by migration. Their attempt to look at the big picture and long-term impacts of migration on the European society and its labor force failed until now. That is the reason why the EU policymakers turned 2016 to IIASA (-1-) to launch a partnership with the goal to get a more scientific basis for their policymaking. IIASA focuses on their systematic analysis on the drivers of migration such as pull factors that drive people towards to a new country and push factors that drive people to leave their homes. This partnership plans to produce scenarios exposing “…the potential impacts of different immigration policies, allowing policymakers to make educated decisions and smart planes…” (-2-). The present findings of IIASA are that the EU future labor force depends not only on migration but also on the proportion of people working (-3-): (1) people over the age of 65 become progressively active in the labor market. (2) Women were to work in the EU at rates common in Sweden. (3) Increasing Digitalisation and Automatization reduces the need for unskilled workers, but increase the need for more educated workers. The result is that the future EU labor force size requires only a moderate rate of migration in the long term. IIASA is just not only modeling the accumulated population but include the characteristics of the individual. Those characteristics include demographics (age and sex, education), ethnocultural (place of birth, ethnicity, language, religion), and economic (labor activity, employment). IIASA applies microsimulation (contrary to the macro-level approach used for the broad population) to find answers “- how well immigrants -are able – to adjust to their new countries, learn the language, find jobs -.“ (-4-) , and to asses the integration of migrants into society. IIASA does not restrict their scenarios to Europe but takes into account worldwide drivers for migration: the population growth in Africa, climate change, food security, and other challenges.

(-1-) IIASA, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, located near Vienna in Laxenburg Austria, use systems analysis to research critical issues of environments, economic, and technology change we face today. www.iiasa.ac.at

(-2-), (-3-), (-4-) “What Drives Migration,” Options, Summer 2018. Page 18.

Roland Leithenmayr VfV

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