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A new working paper by Cathrine Eide analyses the return agreement between Norway and Ethiopia to provide new insights on how to measure the effectiveness of migration policy.

There has and continues to be extensive discussion and critique of the effectiveness of migration policy both publically and academically. Research to date however, tends to measure a migration policy’s effectiveness on whether it achieves the intended outcomes and controls migration flows. Furthermore, the focus has been on the perspective of destination countries and generally failed to account for the diverse range unintended possible effects of a policy.

In this paper, Cathrine Eide analyses the Memorandum of Understanding signed between Norway and Ethiopia in January 2012, in which the Ethiopian state agreed to accept both the voluntary and forced return of Ethiopian nationals residing irregularly in Norway. Eide particularly considers Ethiopia’s motivations for signing the agreement and desired outcomes for the policy to broaden the understanding of the policy’s effectiveness and outcomes. The study seeks to broaden the scope of research on migration policy and challenge current approaches for assessing policy effectiveness. Through highlighting the diverse effects of this return policy, the paper aims to bring new insights to the discourse on how to analyse migration policy outcomes.

This working paper has been developed from Cathrine's Masters Dissertation. Students in the MSc in Migration Studies receiving a distinction for their thesis are invited to publish a modified version as an IMI and COMPAS joint working paper.