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Rebordering Britain & Britons after Brexit

Migration decisions in the face of upheaval: An experimental approach


The analysis of migration under conditions of potential economic and political upheaval is challenging because these undermine the institutional framework that underpins existing migration trajectories. Therefore, this paper demonstrates how an innovative experimental approach can be used to analyse migration decision making under disruptive scenarios of a deep economic crisis and the introduction of work permits. Such disruptions have particular resonance in Europe, which has experienced deep economic crises, as well as discussions of potential regulatory shifts in the European migration framework following the United Kingdom's Brexit referendum. Data were collected from a sample of 540 experimental participants, drawn from young adults (students and young working people) in nine European Union member states, and used to analyse their propensity to migrate under principles of uncertainty, incomplete information, and information overload. The findings indicate that a sharp rise in unemployment rates is more disruptive than the introduction of work permits.

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Allan M. Williams (United Kingdom)

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