Rethinking EU migration and asylum policies: Managing immigration jointly with countries of origin and transit

The new European Commission will inherit an impasse in efforts to reform the European asylum policies as well as concerns about practices in the management of the EU’s external border that contradict humanitarian standards and may even be illegal. While the number of asylum seekers who manage to reach EU territory is now lower than in previous years, it may be low precisely because of those problematic practices, including abuse of irregular migrants along the Western Balkan route, limited search and rescue capacity in the Central Mediterranean, and EU cooperation with the Libyan coast guard even though migrants returned by it to Libya have been abused.

In this 2019 Assessment Report of the MEDAM project, we present insights from MEDAM research and policy dialogue since 2016 to explain how closer cooperation among EU member states and with countries of origin and transit can improve outcomes for all stakeholders. Download the 2019 MEDAM Assessment Report.


Mikkel Barslund ( A research fellow and head of the Ageing Societies Programme at the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS), a leading think tank in Brussels ),

Matthias Lücke ( A senior researcher at the Kiel Institute for the World Economy, an adjunct professor at Kiel University, and a former senior economist at the International Monetary Fund ),

Martin Ruhs ( Chair in Migration Studies and Deputy Director of the Migration Policy Centre (MPC) at the European University Institute (EUI) in Florence ).

The MEDAM Project is financed by Stiftung Mercator.