Contemporary migration processes

 Migration travel today

 Migration processes, historically 

 Contemporary refugee movement  

 Scientist who escaped Aleppo

 Smuggling of migrants

 Climate related migration

 Help for refugees 


"Unlock that door" (Economist, 16 November, 2019)

Voters could make the world twice as rich. Why don’t they?

How to make immigration more palatable in rich democracies
The biggest cost of migration is the hardest to measure. It is cultural.

Many people like their societies the way they are…Overcoming objections will be hard. But

not impossible, if policymakers observe four principles:

First, border control matters. Voters, perfectly reasonably, cannot abide chaos; governments

must set and enforce the rules for who comes.

Second, migrants must pay their way. Most already do, but it is crucial to design policies

that encourage this, by making it easy for them to work and hard, at least for a while, to claim

welfare benefits.

Third, be creative. Australia’s “points-based” system is…quick, transparent and welcoming

[yet] excludes anyone who tries to enter without permission. Australians mostly support this

system because they feel in charge of it… and if they see an immigration dividend.

Fourth, pace matters more than absolute levels. Political resistance to migrants spikes

with sudden surges in immigration levels.

If the flow is steady and orderly…immigration can be higher than most rich countries allow today.


Vietnamese to UK (BBC, 28 October 2019)

Attracted by prospects of making money to send back to families in Vietnam, migrants are willing to take "huge risks" for "one opportunity to send a family member abroad to earn money." UK preferred because "wide network" of Vietnamese already there help with employment and accommodation. With no legal route for low-skilled workers, migration journeys to UK are "very circuitous and precarious."

"Premium" transit (averaging £35,000) is by plane, then a "safe house," e.g in Paris.

"Economy" (average £10,000): overland via Russia, China, E. Europe, France/Germany.

Either way, still enter UK "snuck in the back of a lorry or on a ferry."

UN estimates annual revenues of circa £340 million for smugglers.


We need a global understanding of migration

(Miroslav Lajčák, WEF, January  2018)

"Although migration is a global phenomenon, there is still no global understanding of how to manage it...Throughout all the discussions, I have not heard a single voice arguing that our current response to international migration is sustainable. In fact, what I have heard instead is a resounding rejection of business as usual...As’s center for exactly the type of issue that the United Nations should be dealing with.It is time for us to lead the charge."

 "If borders were open" (Economist, Special Report, July, 2017)

 "A world of free movement would be $78 trillion richer."

"Alienation 101" (Economist 1843, April, 2017 -may require subscription)

 Businesses of communication and adaptation for migrants: At least based on recent 

 experiences of Chinese students at the University of Iowa, processes of cultural 

 exchange and interaction nowadays are rather different than what both critics and

 proponents of student migration often assume.

 Facebook envy lures Egypt's teens to Europe (NY Times, June, 2016)

 Looking for a home (Economist, Special Report, May, 2016)

 Migration is an intrinsically ambivalent business, both for the

 governments that must manage it and for the migrants themselves.

 Border fences (Economist, September, 2015)

"Weaving the world together" (Economist, November, 2011)







 see also: Europe's refugee conundra

                 Articles on trans-Medit. refugee movements



Routes taken by unaccompanied minors, May-July 2017 

(Refugee Youth Service Italy, Guardian, 13 July, 2017)




Central and eastern Mediterranean routes, 2015-16  (EERC)



Balkans route, from Greece through Hungary & Austria to Germany, used by 102 thousand refugees during Jan-Jun, 2015. During these six months, a total of 154 thousand applied for asylum in Germany (NY Times, 28-Aug-15, map from Neue Zürcher Zeitung, 2-Sep, p. 3):

Migrant Policy Institute: more research needed

Study: "Before the boat: understanding the migrant journey" (2015)

In 2014, over three quarters came via the Central Mediterranean (mainly entering the EU through Italy. As of the first seven months of 2015, over half have come across the Eastern Mediterranean, "typically from Turkey to the Greek islands of Kos, Chios, Lesvos and Samos often in flimsy rubber dinghies or small wooden boats." (BBC, 3 Sept, 2015).Most of those of arriving in Greece in 2015 have then proceeded north towards Hungary en route to Germany.



Routes into Germany used by asylum-seekers from Mideast, North Africa. 116 thousand came during Jan-Aug, 2014, half by rail, paying smugglers $5-20 thous. each (Neue Zürcher Zeitung, 15-Oct-14, p. 7):

                       This page last updated  30-November-2019