Data Analysis and Research

The EUAA’s activities in data analysis and research are centred around three core pillars. We have set up, maintain and develop data exchanges, providing a comparable and comprehensive view on the practical functioning of the Common European Asylum System (CEAS). We produce high-quality and timely analytical outputs on asylum-related migration and relevant aspects of the CEAS for a wide range of stakeholders. We develop early warning capacity, forward-looking analyses, and research on the root causes of asylum-related migration.

In the Analytical Area you can access a wide range of limited analytical outputs on asylum-related migration.

Access the Analytical Area    or   Request Access*

*Access to the Analytical Area can only be granted to staff members of the European Commission, JHA agencies and asylum authorities of EU+ countries.
 

Asylum Statistics

Early warning and Preparedness System data

Activities on information exchange concerning international protection commenced in 2013, based on Article 33 Dublin III Regulation and Article 9(3) EASO Regulation.

The EUAA continues developing an information exchange mechanism gathering data from the relevant authorities of 29 EU+ countries (EU Member States, plus Norway and Switzerland), which underpins the EUAA’s Early warning and Preparedness System (EPS).

The EPS indicators focus on all key stages of the Common European Asylum System (CEAS). 

CEAS

 
As the CEAS is a complex process, this information exchange has been developed in iterative stages. The second stage launched in March 2014 focused on the first instance in the asylum process, while the third stage, initiated in September 2015, focused on access to procedure, reception, and Dublin. At the beginning of 2018, information exchange on the fourth stage of the EPS started focusing on the determination in appeal or review.
 
The EPS data consist of provisional data shared under short timelines aimed at giving an estimation of the latest asylum trends across the EU+ countries in as near to real time as possible. 

In developing the EPS indicators, every effort is made to make them as consistent as possible with existing EU official asylum statistics. 

EU Official Asylum Statistics 

While developing the Early warning and Preparedness System indicators, the EUAA works in close cooperation with Eurostat to ensure each of them is as consistent as possible with the existing official asylum statistics collected in line with Regulation (EC) No 862/2007 EU statistics on migration and international protection as amended by Regulation (EU) 2020/851. Eurostat regularly publishes official statistics on asylum on its website. 

The official statistics published by Eurostat are the primary source of data analysed in the annual EUAA Asylum Report as well as the summary of the Situation of Asylum in the European Union: annual overview including an interactive visualisation on some key asylum indicators.

In addition to these EU statistics on asylum, the relevant national authorities responsible for asylum also regularly release national official statistics on asylum.

Strategic Analysis

The EUAA’s work on strategic analysis is concentrated on producing high-quality and timely analytical outputs on asylum-related migration and relevant aspects of the CEAS for a wide range of stakeholders. Regular analyses on latest trends are prepared in order to provide asylum authorities in the EU+ countries and relevant EU institutions with insights of the situation on asylum across the EU+ countries. Such analyses are primarily based on data exchanges within the Early warning and Preparedness System (EPS), which enable close to real time insights into relevant developments, patterns, and trends. However, they also aim to incorporate information and statistics from other available sources directly to the EUAA or via partner agencies and institutions as well as from open sources. 

Strategic analysis output covers regular reports at different intervals (weekly, monthly, quarterly, annual) and ad-hoc reports depending on the identified needs and interests of EUAA and its key stakeholders. Some reports are general, e.g. analysing the evolution of asylum indicators in the EU+ countries or trends in relation countries of origin. Others focus on specific aspects of the Common European Asylum System, such as the Dublin III Regulation or reception. Insights from strategic analyses are regularly presented to the EUAA Management Board, EUAA networks with members of national asylum authorities and partner EU institutions. The EUAA Strategic Analysis team also coordinates pilot projects on new types of analyses and carries out work on designing and implementing new methodologies for analysing qualitative and quantitative data on topics of relevance.

Strategic analytical products are also produced for a wider audience. On a monthly basis, the EUAA presents an analysis of the latest asylum trends, which focuses on applications for international protection lodged in the EU+ countries, decisions issued by national asylum authorities at first instance, and pending cases. It also features a focus section on selected countries of origin and interactive visualisations. Furthermore, each year the EUAA prepares an extensive Asylum Report: Annual Report on the Situation of Asylum in the EU, which is accompanied by an interactive overview with statistical data analysis based on Eurostat: annual latest asylum trends. As this analysis relying on official statistics can only be released later in the year, a preliminary annual analysis based on EPS data is presented at an earlier stage. The EUAA is currently working to expand its strategic analysis portfolio for the general public.

Research Programme

As a centre of expertise on asylum-related migration, the EUAA conducts research aimed at elucidating the push, pull and intervening factors determining ‘forced’ migration to Europe, with the eventual goal of developing an empirical model for the analysis and, if possible, prognosis of asylum-related migration at EU level. A key goal of the Research Programme, which is implemented in collaboration with expert bodies in EU institutions and EU+ countries, civil society and the academia, is to develop an empirical model of asylum-related migration to the EU. 

The EUAA’s research consists of three main areas of work:

  • Obtaining an overview of relevant existing work

    Establish existing knowledge, by conducting literature reviews on push/pull factors and surveys of existing models in asylum-related migration.

  • Engaging in empirical work

    Research on advancing the understanding of root causes of asylum-related migration from the point of view of migrants. Following a feasibility study and a literature review, the EUAA plans to launch surveys in reception centres across the EU+ countries.

  • Building an empirical model of asylum-related migration

    Building an EUAA migration model, by identifying the most relevant determining factors and testing its potential in forecasting the migration pressure on the European asylum system. In addition, the EUAA develops a methodology for the monitoring of information sources for early warning, the EUAA Push Factor Index. 

Surveys to understand Asylum-related Migration (SAM)

The Survey of Asylum-related Migrants (SAM) is a multi-country project designed to collect testimonies directly from people seeking international protection across the European Union.

Based on the premise that digital literacy is increasingly prevalent, the project uses online, self-administered surveys that can be completed on smartphones and offers the possibility to survey large numbers of migrants at the same time. The primary objective of SAM is to establish a permanent system of collecting standardised, reliable, and comparable data on relevant topics, such as push and pull factors, travel histories and migrants’ future aspirations. Understanding these drivers both facilitates general preparedness to deal with a high number of arrivals but also to better inform policymakers. 

Based on a proof of concept which was successfully tested in Greece in October 2021, SAM was quickly adapted to respond to the increasing need for reliable data regarding persons displaced by the war in Ukraine to the EU+. On 11 April 2022, the EUAA launched the Survey of Arriving Migrants for Displaced People from Ukraine, with the support of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The first results are now available.

The project’s online questionnaire, which is available in English, Ukrainian and Russian seeks information on the journey to Europe and any future relocation plans, family composition, educational background as well as the personal situation of the refugee. It is entirely anonymous and voluntary. 

The EUAA has been utilising its focal contact points across Member States and international organisations, as well as social media channels, to reach the target audience. The results of the survey will be evaluated on a regular basis and provided to EU Member States, along with real time analysis and dashboards that can support the work done on the ground.
 

Ukraine Survey

Early warning and forecasting asylum-related migration

Events such as conflict, economic hardship, poor governance, deteriorating political situations and social exclusion of marginalised groups all have the potential to internally displace entire communities or force them to leave their homes to seek refuge in other countries. The EUAA uses big data on media-covered events (GDELT) to monitor such events, which are selected and weighted according to the magnitude of the effect they are likely to have on asylum-related migration. In the interests of simplification, and for analytical purposes, these data have been aggregated into a composite indicator for each country of the world, the EUAA Push Factor Index (PFI). Read more information on applications of the EUAA PFI.

Migration, and especially asylum-related migration, is a complex system, affected by short-lived, context-dependent drivers that interact with each other in unexpected ways and vary wildly between individual displacement events. As a result, migration forecasts which depend on local knowledge and on/off low-quality data tend to be limited in time, space, and scope. To mitigate this issue and to create a system that can be applied at the level of the EU+ countries, the EUAA has developed a data-driven adaptive system that uses machine-learning algorithms to combine administrative data with non-traditional data sources at scale. 

Push and pull factors

The push and pull factors of asylum-related migration, a literature review (download report, published in 2016) contains information that addresses the push and pull factors of migration, with particular attention to asylum-related migration and includes empirical studies and studies developing theoretical frameworks aimed at gaining insight into migration movements.

The review includes different kinds of studies, such as academic research, policy or position papers, briefs, and research reports. More than 300 resources were selected based on systematic searches in trusted search engines such as Web of Science and Google Scholar, and supplemented by extensive searches of the IOM library database.

Relevant reports

Napierała J, Hilton J, Forster JJ, Carammia M, Bijak J. Toward an Early Warning  System for Monitoring  Asylum-Related Migration  Flows in Europe. International Migration Review. October 2021. doi:10.1177/01979183211035736

Forecasting asylum-related migration to the European Union and bridging the gap between evidence and policy. Migration Policy Practice Vol. X, Number 4, September–December 2020 (download report)

IOM Book – Migration in West and North Africa and across the Mediterranean - Trends, risks, development and governance, September 2020 (download here). The EUAA contributed Chapter 8 on ‘Using big data to estimate migration “push factors” from Africa’ (download here)

The quantitative assessment of asylum-related migration. A survey of methodologies (download report).