Large-scale Irregular Migration from Turkey: What was Going on There?

  • Associate Professor and Senior Researcher, Centre on Migration, Policy and Society (COMPAS), University of Oxford
Location: UTC 3.132

In 2015, about 850,00 people, a quarter of all arrivals in Turkey, moved on irregularly to Greece in the EU. This represents a sudden change from 2014, when only 51,000 people left Turkey for the EU. What was going in Turkey in 2015 that can explain these processes? Who were the people staying and who were the people leaving? How did drivers of the outflow, like social capital, human capital, perceptions, and aspirations, affect it? How was the spectrum of facilitators like hotel owners, life-vest traders and smugglers operating? Did policymakers not want or could they not stop this from happening? How can we explain the policy responses? What changed in March 2016, when the EU-Turkey agreement came into force and the flow suddenly ended? In this talk, I will triangulate human agency, migration industry and regional and national political opportunity, and constraint structures to unravel the micro-, meso- and macro-level drivers of irregular migration through Turkey.

This event is part of the Turkish Ottoman Lecture Series.


Hosted by Middle Eastern Studies and co-sponsored by the Center for European Studies, the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, the Rapoport Center for Human Rights and Justice, and the Department of History.

Event series: Other Speakers