International cooperation on migration: what do domestic publics want?

47 Pages Posted: 24 May 2021

See all articles by Alina Vrânceanu

Alina Vrânceanu

European University Institute - Migration Policy Centre

Tobias Heidland

Kiel Institute for the World Economy; University of Kiel

Martin Ruhs

Migration Policy Centre (MPC), European University Institute (EUI)

Elias Dinas

University of Oxford

Date Written: May 21, 2021

Abstract

What preferences do people have for cooperation between high and lower-income countries on
irregular migration and refugee protection? Despite the increase in the number and breadth of cross-country cooperation agreements in this policy area, we know little about people’s preferences for such policies. This paper addresses this question in the context of the EU-Turkey ‘migration deal’ agreed in 2016. We conduct cross-country conjoint experiments in Germany, Greece, and Turkey to shed light on the types of policies that generate public support for cross-country cooperation on irregular migration and refugee protection. Our respondents are favorable to several core features of the current EU-Turkey migration deal regarding the return of irregular migrants, financial aid to refugees in Turkey, and the intensity of Turkish border controls. We also find evidence of public support for cooperation on resettlement and EU support to Greece to deal with migration. In certain aspects of cooperation, public preferences seem to respond to interactions between policy dimensions. For example, German public support for relocating refugees from Greece is enhanced if there are stepped-up border controls in Turkey. These findings have important implications for research on public attitudes to asylum and migration policies, ‘migration diplomacy’ in international relations, and public backlash against international cooperation more generally.

Keywords: cross-country cooperation, migration, EU-Turkey agreement, conjoint analysis

Suggested Citation

Vrânceanu, Alina and Heidland, Tobias and Ruhs, Martin and Dinas, Elias, International cooperation on migration: what do domestic publics want? (May 21, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3850698 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3850698

Alina Vrânceanu (Contact Author)

European University Institute - Migration Policy Centre ( email )

Villa Malafrasca
Via Boccaccio 151
Florence, I-50133
Italy

Tobias Heidland

Kiel Institute for the World Economy ( email )

P.O. Box 4309
Kiel, Schleswig-Hosltein D-24100
Germany

University of Kiel ( email )

Olshausenstr. 40
D-24118 Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein 24118
Germany

Martin Ruhs

Migration Policy Centre (MPC), European University Institute (EUI) ( email )

Villa La Fonte, via delle Fontanelle 18
50016 San Domenico di Fiesole
Florence, Florence 50014
Italy

Elias Dinas

University of Oxford ( email )

Mansfield Road
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX1 4AU
United Kingdom

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