EU citizens have the right to live and work in any other EU state. As Roxana Barbulescu writes, however, this principle of freedom of movement has come under pressure from a number of recent developments. Focusing on the UK, she notes that while there are substantial economic benefits from freedom of movement, there is now growing support for putting restrictions […]
In several European countries, commentators have linked the rise of anti-foreigner sentiments with rising levels of immigration. But do higher levels of immigration also undermine public support for social policies? Using survey data from 17 rich democracies, David Brady and Ryan Finnigan find little evidence to support this claim. They write that immigration may even encourage public support for the […]
The ‘Nordic model’ of prostitution policy has often been presented as a success in decreasing the number of women in visible prostitution and in promoting a feminist perspective. May-Len Skilbrei and Charlotta Holmström carefully examine the different policy approaches among Nordic countries and argue that, in reality, there is no such a thing as a ‘Nordic model of prostitution policy’. […]
EU asylum policy must be fairer for those in need and must distribute burdens more equally among member states
The issue of migration into Europe has once again generated headlines, following a number of incidents in which migrants have drowned at sea off the coasts of Italy and Malta in attempts to reach the EU. Considering the state of current EU asylum policy, Georgia Mavrodi reviews the data on EU asylum migration. She argues that the system does not […]
The financial crisis has brought the issue of immigration to the forefront of the political agenda in several European countries. Thom Brooks writes that the UK’s immigration policy seems driven not so much by commitment to a specific vision, but instead policy management through tinkering and tampering. He argues that what the UK requires is not only leadership, but a […]
Recent waves of immigrants to the UK have contributed far more in taxes than they received in benefits
The question of whether immigrants make a positive or negative contribution to a state’s economy has been the subject of intense controversy across countries in Europe. Christian Dustmann and Tommaso Frattinioutline results from research in the UK which found that recent immigrants – those who arrived after 1999 – have provided a consistently positive and strong contribution to the UK’s fiscal health. […]
Over 300 migrants travelling from Libya to Italy died on 3 October when the boat they were travelling in caught fire and sank in the Mediterranean. Nando Sigona writes that efforts to prevent further disasters taking place must focus on the reasons why migrants choose to risk their lives by travelling to Europe. He argues that the EU has not […]
The Eurozone crisis has encouraged the reform of European institutions and the spread of austerity policies across struggling Eurozone economies. Michelle Everson assesses the role of European courts in this process, noting that they have shown an unwillingness to put legal obstacles in front of agreements generated as part of the EU’s crisis management. While this may be justified in […]
European law guarantees the free movement of citizens across EU member states. Using the UK as a case study, Jo Shaw, Nina Miller Westoby and Maria Fletcher write that in practice there nevertheless remain a number of difficulties in ensuring that EU citizens can exercise their rights. These include inconsistencies between European and national law, and cultural obstacles. To overcome […]
Horace Campbell investigates the political and economic crises of the early twenty-first century through the prism of NATO’s intervention in Libya. He traces the origins of the conflict, situates it in the broader context of the Arab Spring uprisings, and explains the expanded role of a post-Cold War NATO. This military organization is the instrument through which the capitalist class […]
Trust in European justice institutions is markedly lower in Southern and Eastern Europe, but legitimacy also requires that institutions meet substantive requirements to legitimise their power and structure.
Trust in legal systems, the courts, and police varies widely across Europe, especially in former communist countries such as Ukraine, Russia and Bulgaria. Jonathan Jackson and the FIDUCIA project team argue that current social survey statistics provide only a partial picture. While they do show how much people trust institutions across Europe, they do not address whether or not the […]
Our courts treat criminal conviction with extreme caution – so shouldn’t we be a little more cautious in creating criminal laws?
Modern judicial systems are largely grounded on the principle of the ‘presumption of innocence’, which is intended to protect individuals from receiving inappropriate punishments. While we are extremely careful to prevent wrongful convictions in courts, however, the laws which are enforced by courts are typically passed by simple majorities in a national legislature. Arguing that it is perhaps no less […]
The consequences of the United States’ security service’s surveillance operations as revealed by former US National Security Agency contractor, Edward Snowden, have echoed around the world over the past month. One of the main strands of the unfolding story is Snowden’s attempts to seek asylum to avoid prosecution in the US. Geoff Gilbert takes a close look at the legal […]
The Poland case shows that the EU should not be inhibited from putting pressure on member states over gay rights.
Does the EU help or hinder gay rights movements in post-communist Europe? Conor O’Dwyer assesses the impact of EU intervention in the case of gay rights in Poland. He argues that Europeanisation perspectives, in which a country’s policies are assumed to be shaped before and during accession by EU conditionality, offer a fairly poor account of how gay rights have […]
The EU’s standoff with Hungary shows that there is little agreement on how European institutions can intervene in the policies of national governments
Since the 2010 election of the Fidesz government in Hungary, the EU has become concerned about its increasingly aggressive nationalist turn, including major changes to the constitution, media, judiciary, and education system, write Erin Marie Saltman and Lise Herman. As leaders in Hungary’s government protest about the EU’s ‘colonisation’ of Hungary, Europe’s leaders disagree on whether or not the country […]
Does immigration have a positive or negative impact on native populations? Nicole B. Simpson and William Betz have analysed data on immigrant flows to 26 European countries between 2002, and have found that immigrants have a positive impact on the happiness and well-being of natives, especially after the first year. While the overall positive impact may be a small one, […]
The decline in UK immigration is exaggerated and signals a broader crisis in society and the economy
Hein de Haas examines what is behind the decrease in immigration to the UK and finds that politicians have overstated the impact they have had. A large part of it may be explained by reasons other than the government’s tough rules, such as the poor performance of the UK’s economy, wage levels, and labour demand. Student migration, which explains most of […]
While harmonising EU drug policies is unnecessary, it is important that states can learn from drug policy successes and failures in other countries.
Are drug policies in different European Union member states becoming more similar? Caroline Chatwin assesses the development of drug policies in European states and the potential for policies to become harmonised across the EU. She notes that while in some states there has been a trend toward more lenient policies focused on treatment; other countries, such as Sweden, have adopted […]
The revelations over PRISM show that we need a stronger political commitment to privacy protection in Europe.
Recent weeks have seen revelations over the US government’s electronic surveillance programme, PRISM, with Europe being drawn into the controversy, as much of its communications are routed through the US. Christopher Kuner writes that the row over PRISM illustrates that government access to data is a global issue, and one that will have long term implications for privacy and data […]
The latest agreement on the governance of the Schengen border control regime simply revamps old rules and changes little on the ground.
Concerned by growing migratory pressures on Europe’s external borders, some EU member states have called for a revision of the rules regarding the imposition of national border controls within the EU. Ruben Zaiotti examines the recent agreement on the governance of the Schengen border control regime, which aims to clarify how these controls might operate. He argues that the agreement […]