Frontex and the EU Border Regime

Using modern technology and in cooperation with neighboring states the European Union tries to secure its external borders in an attempt to deter both criminal activity and illegal migration. Central actor is the border management agency Frontex. Who or what is Frontex? And what exactly does Frontex do? These are some of the questions the policy brief seeks to shed light on. At the same time it provides an overview of the development and central elements of the European border regime.

Mit dem Slogan "Kein Mensch ist illegal" demonstrieren Studenten in Hamburg für Flüchtlinge aus Lampedusa.

Mechthild Baumann


Currently, as of 2014, the European Union extends along approximately 12,000 km of land borders and 45,000 km of maritime borders. In contrast to many other policy areas, the common policies for the EU’s external borders do not adhere to the aims originally set at their creation in the 1950s. On the contrary, from the very beginning, the EU’s founding fathers rooted four fundamental freedoms in the treaties. Weiter...

Die griechische Grenzpolizei überwacht die griechisch-türkische Grenze

Mechthild Baumann

Frontex — Questions and Answers

Frontex is not a border policing body, but an agency of the European Union, founded on 1 May 2005 by the EC Regulation No 2007/2004. Frontex’s purpose is to contribute to the management of the EU’s external borders. Weiter...

Denkmal der Unterzeichnung des „Schengener Abkommens“ in Schengen (Luxemburg)

Mechthild Baumann

The Development of a European Border Regime

In the 1980s, the European Community (at that time it was not yet a "Union") found itself in crisis. Europe-wide, there was a rapid dwindling of the population’s approval of European unification, while the integration simultaneously stagnated. This attitude also caused economic loss in the EC States. Weiter...

Zwei Grenzkontrolleure laufen entlang der Begrenzung zwischen Polen und Weißrussland.

Mechthild Baumann

Externalization: From a Line to an Area, from Entry Control to Exit Control

With the development of the Schengen Agreement, the ministries in the Schengen states responsible for border management have gradually expanded the border line to become a border area. Weiter...

Angehörige der Frontex-Grenzschutzbehörde vor einem technologisierten Überwachungssytem in Nea Vyssa, Griechenland

Mechthild Baumann


In addition to the externalization (that is, the shifting beyond EU borders), the European border regime is also characterized by technologization. While today the majority of people crossing EU external borders are still personally checked by border guards, this task should be increasingly taken over by computer technology in the future. Weiter...

Ein Hubschrauber überwacht den Luftraum über der Grenze.

Mechthild Baumann

Border Economies

The political goal of managing the external borders of the EU called a wide range of actors who offer their services either in the managing of external borders or to refugees and asylum seekers who intend to enter the EU. Weiter...

Flüchtlinge vor Lampedusa auf einem Boot der "Marina Militare", der italienischen Küstenwache.

Mechthild Baumann

On the Other Side of the Border Fence

The tighter the borders become, and the more intensely they are monitored by both technology and personnel, the higher the number of migrants who die trying to cross these borders. Weiter...

Migranten aus Subsahara-Afrika auf einem Boot der italienischen Küstenwache.

Mechthild Baumann

Is Migration a Risk?

In the introductory description of Frontex’s tasks and duties, the term "risk analysis" appears several times. It may appear to some that it is completely normal for a border protection agency to analyze risks. Weiter...

Frontex and the EU Border Regime


Here you can find the glossary for Mechthild Baumann´s policy brief "Frontex and the EU Border Regime". Weiter...




Teaserbild Newsletter Migration und Bevölkerung

Kurzdossiers und Länderprofile focus migration abonnieren

Hier können Sie Kurzdossiers und Länderprofile von focus migration abonnieren. Weiter... 


Zahlen zu Asyl in Deutschland

Wie viele Menschen suchen in Deutschland Asyl? Woher kommen sie? Wie viele Asylanträge sind erfolgreich? Und wie viele Menschen werden abgeschoben? Wir stellen die wichtigsten Zahlen zum Thema Asyl und Flucht monatlich aktualisiert in einfachen Infografiken dar. Weiter...