Research Seminar

How do people think about externalizing migration policy: Evidence from the EU-Turkey agreement — Tobias Heidland

13 Apr 2021


Tobias Heidland (Kiel Institute; Kiel University (CAU))


In recent years, especially since the so-called "migration crisis" of 2015-16, rich democracies have started providing financial assistance to lower-income origin and transit countries of migrants. These countries receive this funding to reduce irregular out-migration to high-income countries and provide refugees with protection and socio-economic integration opportunities. A prime example is the so-called "EU-Turkey deal." Although this externalization of the asylum and refugee policy is now a key feature of both the EU's and the US's policy, what voters think about such agreements was so far unknown.

To study voters' preferences, we conducted a cross-national conjoint experiment with samples of the voting age population in Germany, Greece, and Turkey. Overall, our findings on public policy preferences for EU-Turkey cooperation in Germany, Greece, and Turkey suggest that, when considering different types of cooperation, there is considerable public support for the status quo in most of the EU-Turkey Statement's dimensions that we analyzed.


Elias Dinas, European University Institute, Florence, Italy — Tobias Heidland (Kiel Institute; Kiel University (CAU)) — Martin Ruhs, European University Institute, Florence, Italy — Alina Vranceanu, European University Institute, Florence, Italy


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