Migration: economic and social impacts in Europe

We live in a time when the phenomenon of migration is becoming as widespread and important as ever. It is both a source of social and economic benefits, but also one of the biggest challenges facing Europe and individual EU member states. What is this phenomenon really? How is it defined?

Unequivocally defining the concept of migration is not an easy task due to its multidimensionality. According to the Eurostat definition, “migration refers to the number of migrants, people who change their place of residence from or to a given area (usually a country) in a given period (usually a year)”. 1

Of particular relevance today is the phenomenon of labor migration. Emigration can be defined as a situation in which a person leaves his permanent place of residence for some time or forever. It is the movement of people beyond the borders of a given territory, a temporary or permanent departure from the country. The main reason for labor emigration is the desire to improve the standard of living. The reasons for migration range from demographic and human rights issues, to a sense of security in the home country, historical and political issues, and economic and climate issues.

And what are the effects of migration? Like any significant social phenomenon, there are consequences. You can feel the effects yourself, in your daily life. The scale of the phenomenon, its consequences and impact on various economic and social spheres make migration one of the most important problems. Various disciplines are trying to learn and understand the phenomenon of modern international migration. A country that illustrates quite clearly the positive and negative effects of migration is Germany, where one in five residents of the country comes from an immigrant background.

The main beneficiary of migration is its participant, but there is often controversy in the literature about the potential benefits and costs to the sending and receiving countries of migrants. Do the benefits outweigh the disadvantages? Should European countries be concerned about the consequences of the influx of immigrants?

What is interesting, migration provides a “mirror” for changes taking place around the world, affecting the lives of individuals and entire nations. This is particularly relevant now, relating this topic to the context of the war in Syria and Ukraine. The high volume of migratory movements that can be observed today shows how great the need for analysis of these processes is. If you are interested in the topic of migration, its causes and effects, we encourage you to take the course Migration: economic and social effects in Europe.

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