The policy tap fallacy. Lessons from the Central Mediterranean Route on how increasing restrictions fail to reduce irregular migration flows.

Gabriele Restelli

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paper

Abstract

This policy paper provides a critical analysis of the use of restrictive entry and asylum regulation as a migration management tool, using Italy as a case study. It proposes that such restrictions, rather than deterring irregular migration, tend to push more people into irregularity. While the outsourcing, or “externalization” of border controls, coupled with cooperation with third countries such as Libya, may have contributed to the recent drop in sea arrivals, migration literature and evidence from the Central Mediterranean Route suggest that reducing access to legal pathways will likely have no significant effect on the number of migrants that reach Italian shores. Italy and European governments must acknowledge that this is not an effective way to combat migrant smuggling or to reduce irregular migration.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherMixed Migration Centre
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2019

Keywords

  • Migration
  • Migration policy
  • Mediterranean

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Global inequalities
  • Global Development Institute

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