Explaining the immigration policy mix : Countries' relative openness to asylum and labour migration




Faculty/Professorship: Political Sociology  
Author(s): Schultz, Caroline; Lutz, Philipp; Simon, Stephan
Publisher Information: Bamberg : Otto-Friedrich-Universität
Year of publication: 2022
Pages: 763-784
Source/Other editions: European Journal of Political Research, 60 (2021), 4, S. 763-784 - ISSN: 1475-6765
is version of: 10.1111/1475-6765.12422
Year of first publication: 2020
Language(s): English
Licence: Creative Commons - CC BY-NC - Attribution - NonCommercial 4.0 International 
URN: urn:nbn:de:bvb:473-irb-550647
Abstract: 
Western democracies have developed complex policies to manage migration flows. Much of the scholarly literature and political discourse assume that countries have become increasingly selective and that they prioritise economic intakes. Despite clear efforts by policymakers to distinguish between refugees and migrant workers, we know surprisingly little about how countries combine different policy dimensions and which factors shape their relative openness to different target groups. In this article, we shed light on how countries combine two of the main admission channels, asylum and labour migration, by introducing the concept of the ‘immigration policy mix’. A comparative analysis of 33 OECD countries between 1980 and 2010 examines the pattern and drivers behind their immigration policy mix: Does the policy mix follow a pattern of convergence, is it subject to political dynamics or is it path dependent? The results reveal that despite a shift in political sympathies from asylum to labour migration, countries' immigration policy mixes have strongly converged into more liberal policies overall. The immigration policy mix primarily reflects governments’ limited room to manoeuvre due to competing political pressures. These insights demonstrate that the immigration policy mix serves to enhance our understanding of countries’ complex regulation of immigration.
GND Keywords: OECD; Mitgliedsstaaten; Einwanderungspolitik; Geschichte 1980-2010
Keywords: immigration, migration policy, policy mix, labour, asylum
DDC Classification: 320 Political Science  
RVK Classification: MF 9250   
Type: Article
URI: https://fis.uni-bamberg.de/handle/uniba/55064
Release Date: 23. August 2022

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