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IDEA Report Summary

Project ID: 44446
Funded under: FP6-POLICIES
Country: Poland

Final Report Summary - IDEA (Mediterranean and Eastern European Countries as new immigration destinations in the European Union)

One of the major aims of the project was a comparative analysis involving three groups of countries that at various periods started to systematically attract international migrants: the pioneers of Western Europe and the latecomers representing two distinctly different regions of the continent - the Mediterranean region and the new accession countries of Eastern Europe (together named MEDEEA countries). It was expected that such an analysis might enable researchers to deepen the understanding and interpretations of past and current migration trends, and design a projection model capable of predicting future migration in the European Union (EU). Another important objective of IDEA consisted in providing the policymakers (both in new destination countries and at the community level) with a sound knowledge that would facilitate their efforts to improve the management of migration flows and immigrant integration. By this IDEA offers scientific support to the much-needed development of migration policies in the EU.

Policy recommendations elaborated within the IDEA project were presented on several occasions and deeply discussed with experts, who by delivering valuable comments and suggestions allowed for a significant improvement of the policy-oriented executive summaries. Policy recommendations elaborated by all the national teams enabled the preliminary comparative analysis of the policies in the countries being at different stages of 'maturity' in immigration. The synthesis of policy recommendations and of policy-oriented executive summaries was prepared and presented during the final conference in Cracow, Poland.

Teams representing each region worked separately in order to find the regularities concerning migration realities and policies within the particular group of the IDEA countries. After the first synthesis report that referred to the 'old' immigration countries, namely France, Austria and Germany was prepared in previous stage of the project, the second regional synthesis was elaborated. It was intended to summarise (compare and synthesise) the results of the research activities conducted in the Southern European countries (Greece, Portugal, Spain and Italy). In order to achieve the goal of preparing the synthesis report for these countries, at the beginning of 2009 a regional workshop was organised. The meeting took place in Lisbon and was hosted by the Portuguese partner Socius. In the consecutive months, the synthesis report was successively revised and improved. In the result of intensive and fruitful cooperation of the Southern European research teams (Socius, IUIOG, Eliamep, CNR) a report titled 'The making of an immigration model: inflows, impacts and policies in Southern Europe' was finalised and edited as No. 8 of the IDEA Working Papers in May 2009.

One of the results of the country reports in the Mediterranean region is the fact that many similarities in the development of immigration and migration policies in the region could be found while comparing the situation in the given countries. One of the commonalities is a persistence of a sizeable illegal, irregular or undocumented immigration and a failure or ambivalence regarding control of that phenomenon by the state. Another similarity refers to the one of migration policy tools preferred in the Southern European countries, namely the regularisation programmes. The most important characteristics of the 'young' immigration countries investigated within the IDEA project were presented during the final conference in Cracow and a separate chapter on that issue is included in the book manuscript, summarising the findings of the IDEA project. Collaboration during the comparative analyses conducted in the Southern IDEA countries occurred to be very inspiring, which resulted in a scientific results of a high scientific and practical - due to numerous policy-oriented aspects - value.

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