Actual Patterns of Migration Flows: The Challenge of Migration and Asylum in Contemporary Europe

  • Catherine Wihtol de WendenEmail author


Catherine Wihtol de Wenden analyses the implications of the refugee and migration crisis for the EU. She starts with the fact that, at the beginning of the twenty-first century, international migration reached 244 million people (i.e. 3.5% of the world population), with roughly the same number of flows going to the north (south–north and north–north: 120 million) as to the south (south–south and north–south: 130 million). This presents a new situation. Against this background, de Wenden maintains that all regions and countries are, in one way or another, part of the migration process by being involved in either emigration, immigration or transit flows (most of them in all three aspects together). As a result, categories such as ‘foreign workers’ and ‘asylum seekers’ are becoming increasingly blurry. The chapter also shows that new types of migrants—isolated women, unaccompanied children, circulating elites and experts—have entered into international mobility. At the same time, de Wenden reminds us that the right to move is among the least shared in the world: global mobility is highly segmented based on nationality, class, gender, race, etc. As well as this, the end of the Cold War and the fall of the Berlin Wall in Europe in 1989 brought about generalisation of the right to exit, with easy access to a passport, even in southern countries, along with more restricted rights to enter OECD countries.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre d’Études et des Recherches Internationales (CERI), Sciences PoParisFrance
  2. 2.Le Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS)ParisFrance

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