Can We Anticipate Future Migration Flows?


A number of early warning signals were identifiable in the years prior to the 2015/16 refugee surge in Europe, yet the world was caught off-guard by mass migration movements from the Middle East and Africa. In the past, this has also been the case in the context of most major geopolitical or environmental shocks. Capacity to anticipate all but directly-regulated migration flows appears to be quite weak. The possibility for transit and destination countries to anticipate both forced and legal migration flows is however critical in order to ensure effective management of asylum, migration and integration systems. Recently, some OECD and EU countries have developed tools to predict short or longer-term migration trends or to assess migration uncertainties and risks, but many countries still have quite limited capacities in this domain. This edition of Migration Policy Debates presents the results of a stock-taking exercise of existing practices for better anticipating different types of migration movements. It brings key lessons learnt from the joint EASO-OECD conference “From panic to planning: unpacking the policy toolbox to anticipate migration trends” (Paris, June 2016) and presents lessons for improving information systems to reinforce the preparedness of reception and management systems

OECD Migration Policy Debates, (2018), 16
Marcello Carammia
Marcello Carammia
Senior Researcher in Political Science

My research focuses on the comparative analysis of institutions and public policies, with special interest in the interaction between migration dynamics, politics, and policy.