The European Asylum policy changes and its Domino Effect on the Balkan Route

Authors: Bostjan Rogelj*, University of Ljubljana, Borjana Lubura*, University of Hawaii - Manoa
Topics: Migration, Political Geography
Keywords: migration, asylum policies, European Union, Balkan route, externalization, domino effect, push-backs
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 1:10 PM / 2:50 PM
Room: Virginia A, Marriott, Lobby Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


A priority area for the EU political agenda is the creation of a common European asylum system. This process, often referred to as the Europeanization of asylum policy, has marked the development of national asylum policies in member states and neighboring countries in the last two decades. On one hand, it has created a set of legal documents (EU laws, directives and regulations) that had to be translated into national legislation. On the other hand, it created a set of “European” beliefs, values and norms. Although not legally binding, they have an important influence on member states’ actions and policies since they constitute a framework of what is politically possible/tolerable. We argue that the combination of formal legal documents and informal values and norms created a new state of interdependency--a domino effect--in which changes in the main migration host countries force external changes, even beyond the EU. The presentation has three parts: first, analysis of the main aspects of the Europeanization; second, an investigation of Slovenian and Croatian responses to the growing anti-immigrant sentiment in Germany and Austria (two main host countries at the end of the Balkan route); third, representation of life in provisional camps in Bosnia and Herzegovina which are the result of policing, increased border surveillance, and illegal push-backs.

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