Networks and their Influence on Migration Policy

Time and again politicians find that the goals of their migration policies are only partially achieved or not at all. Scientists have already been observing this phenomenon for three decades and call this the "policy gap" hypothesis: inadequate implementation of political measures or the difficulties of controlling migratory movements result in migration policy, which relates particularly to poorly-qualified migrant workers, having unintended consequences. The reasons are to be found in political, economic and, ever-increasingly, as of late, in social factors determined by migration networks. This policy brief aims to show the efficacy of these migration networks through the example of Romanian migration to Spain, and demonstrates how various features of these networks undermine the intended migration policy goals. (Published 10/2008)

Rumänische Frauen stehen vor dem Migrationsbüro in Bukarest Schlange, um sich für eine Stelle in Spanien zu bewerben.

Tim Elrick

Conclusions from the Romanian-Spanish Migration Space

During the last ten years, Romanian citizens have become one of the strongest migrant groups in Spain, although to date there are still no opportunities for longer-term residence or employment, officially. Weiter...

Van Luong aus Laos lebt seit 26 Jahren in Deutschland.


Migrant networks

Migration is always a highly interactive social process. Starting from considerations as to whether one really wants to move one's place of residence permanently or temporarily, to the actual decision concerning the manner of migration. Weiter...

Tim Elrick

Effects of networks on selected policy measures

We now go on to demonstrate how migration networks work by examining some selected migration policies, taking the example of Romanian migrants in Spain, whose networks were only recently examined in detail in a research project. Weiter...

Tim Elrick

Romanian migration networks and their influence on Spanish migration policy

As the selected policy measures have shown, reactions to such measures differ depending on how well-developed a migration network is in the respective origin communities. In places with a long history of migration, migrants frequently demonstrate a coordinated response. Weiter...

Tim Elrick


The example of migration from Romania to Spain demonstrates that the existence of strong migration networks has a considerable influence on the outcome of migration policy measures. Migration networks can obstruct or reinforce policy goals. Weiter...


References and Further Reading

Here you can find a list of references as well as further reading for the Policy Brief "Networks and their Influence on Migration Policy" by Tim Elrick. Weiter...




Teaserbild Newsletter Migration und Bevölkerung

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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...