Evaluating the Impact of Asylum Policies on Refugee Integration in Europe

What are the key parameters of the asylum process that affect the subsequent integration of refugees?


This project will provide a comprehensive assessment of how key policy parameters of the asylum process causally affect the subsequent integration of asylum seekers who have been granted some form of refugee or refugee like status in Europe. European governments are confronted with the biggest refugee crisis since the Second World War.

Faced with this conundrum, European policy makers are struggling with the design of the asylum process and programs for refugee integration. There are heated debates about what should or should not be done with asylum seekers and refugees. Despite the urgent and fundamental policy challenge, we desperately lack reliable causal tests that examine how key parameters of the asylum process affect the subsequent integration of refugees. Therefore, the goal of this project is to fill this gap and make a leap in providing some of the first systematic evidence that examines how the key policy parameters of the asylum process affect the subsequent short and long-term integration of refugees in six key receiving countries in Europe: Germany, Greece, Italy, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland.

This project will utilise quasi-experimental research designs and take advantage of high quality register panel data coupled with targeted surveys to better understand where and for whom asylum policies and programs are working or failing. Specifically, we will examine how waiting times, geographic assignment, labour market restrictions, integration courses and welfare support affect refugees and their children. As Europe faces one of its largest challenges in recent memory, this project will provide systematic information to help countries integrate a new generation of European residents, refugees.


  • Refugee studies


  • Economics
  • Political Science
  • Sociology
  • Statistics


International Organisations


NGOs, state- or other institutions

  • Swiss Refugee Council
  • Migration Policy Group

Relevant Countries

  • Germany
  • Norway
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland


This is an ongoing project, which started in autumn 2016. The information here is updated regularly. If you have any inquiries please don’t hesitate to contact the project team via the form below.

Contact the project team

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Research team

Dominik Hangartner
University of Zurich

Ghias Aljundi
Associated Member
University of London

Constantin Hruschka
Associated Member
Swiss Refugee Council

Aline Buetikofer
Associated Member
Norwegian School of Economics

David Laitin
Associated Member
Stanford University

Simone Cremaschi
Associated Member
European University Institute

Flavia Fossati
University of Lausanne

Marco Steenbergen
University of Zurich

Ben Wilson
Principal Member
University of London

Moritz Marbach
Associated Member
Universität Mannheim

Jens Hainmueller
Associated Member
Stanford University

Kare Vernby
Associated Member
Uppsala Universitet