Comparing Crises: Migration governance and dynamics of South–South migration flows

The Migration Governance and Asylum Crises (MAGYC – 2018-2022) project, coordinated by the Hugo Observatory at the University of Liège (Belgium) explores how European migration policies are influenced by political crises triggered by migration. At a time when such policies are heavily contested across European member-states, and when asylum seems more threatened than ever, this project is critically important to improve our understanding of how migration policies are formulated and shaped by a context of crisis. The project gathers 13 partners from diverse European countries, as well as from Lebanon and Turkey. The project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (Grant agreement number 822806).

The GIGA leads the Work Package “Comparing Crises”. This Work Package Comparing Crisis conducts comparative, multi-level analysis of the dynamics of South–South migration flows in key sending regions of migration to the EU. It maps how level of state stability interacts with migration flows as well as with related governance approaches in key migrant-sending regions. This is done by analysing, from a historical perspective, the national responses and proposals emerging in the aftermath of a perceived “migration crisis.” Bottom-up responses formulated by local authorities, non-governmental organisations, and migrants themselves are similarly examined. The ultimate goal here is to build a sound empirical base for effective European migration governance endeavours in the regions under study.

Funding: This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement no. 822806. 


Collaborators at GIGA: André Bank, Christiane Fröhlich, Nicole Hirt, Mattea Weihe

Research assistants: Siham Ferjani, Haifa Ben Chiekha, Elham Abdelgader Werfalli, Mounkaïla Abdou



  • Tunisia: January-February 2020, July-December 2020 
  • Niger: March 2020, October-December 2020 


Working papers and publications


Conferences, events and presentations 

  • Invited lecture Migration policies in Libya, Morocco, Tunisia and Niger (together with Katharina Natter), Seawatch e. V. , 15 July 2021 (online)
  • Co-organisation of panel Governing Migration (together with Christiane Fröhlich) Session #227 workshop | SC Migration Politics and Governance at the 18th IMISCOE Annual Conference (online), 9 July 2021
  • Co-organiser of panel Changing Aspirations in Contexts of Forced Migration (together with Aysen Üstübici & Milena Belloni), Session #125 workshop | SC Reflexive Migration Studies at the 18th IMISCOE Annual Conference (online), 8 July 2021
  • Webinar Series Zooming in on Migration and Asylum | Session #9: Ensuring comparability in cross-national research on migration, 25 May 2021 | Speaker
  • Workshop Governing Refugee Returns in the International System, Centre for Global Cooperation Research, University Duisburg-Essen (online), 26–27 November 2020 | Invited discussant in panel “The role of supranational organizations including the EU in the governance of refugee returns”
  • Webinar Series Zooming in on Migration and Asylum | Session #4: Comparing Crises – „Migration Crises“ in the Middle East and North Africa, GIGA Institute for Middle East Studies (online), 27 Oct 2020 | Speaker
  • 3rd Conference of the German Network of Forced Migration Researchers: Contexts of Displacement, Refugee Protection and Forced Migrants’ Lives, September 17-19 2020. Invited speaker in the panel Research ethics in refugee and forced migration studies — international perspectives.
  • Convener of panel Regional approaches to migration governance across the Mediterranean at the ISA Conference Ifrane, 23-25 June 2020 (postponed due to Covid19).