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“It’s two different worlds”—MPG’s Deputy Director explains how the influx of Ukrainian refugees is reshaping European reactions

In a recent interview by the Mexican Council on Foreign Relations, MPG’s Alexander Wolffhardt answers questions surrounding migration policies and the recent influx of Ukrainian refugees. 

The questions from the interview: 

  • How would you characterise the overall state of European policy and readiness to integrate refugees?
  • How has this handling of Ukrainian refugees changed from its state before the war in Ukraine? What are the main differences being observed in the handling of Ukrainian refugees vis-a-vis other refugee flows in the past years?
  • What aspects come into play towards acceptance and integration, as opposed to rejection, of refugees in the European Union?
  • Can a significant shift in the general acceptance and integration of refugees, regardless of origin, be expected after experiences with the war in Ukraine?
  • This special protection you mentioned, is it a good development? Or could it hinder the acceptance and integration of other refugee flows? 

In answering the questions, Wolffhardt draws upon the findings of the National Integration Evaluation Mechanism (NIEM)—a project which monitors and measures refugee integration policies in 14 EU Member States and establishes a framework for evidence-based policymaking. 

Watch the full interview here 


About the National Integration Evaluation Mechanism (NIEM) 

NIEM is a six-year long project that measures refugee integration policies in 14 EU Member States and establishes a framework for evidence-based policy-making. Being the largest European integration project ever led by civil society, the European Commission and Polish government are supporting MPG and partners to monitor refugee integration from 2016 to 2021. 

Interested in learning more about NIEM? Register to join the NIEM conference, entitled “Refugee integration in the EU—what next?” on June 20

About the Migration Policy Group (MPG)

MPG is an independent think-and-do-tank based in Brussels. MPG’s purpose is rooted in its ability to inspire networks to provide evidence-based projects, research and campaigns in the areas of integration, migration and anti-discrimination.

Learn more about the Migration Policy Group.