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Research Webinar | The Geopolitics of EU Migration Instruments: The EU Trust Fund for Africa

Monday April 12, 2021, from 13:15 to 14:45
Research seminar

Federica Zardo (University of Vienna)
DiscussantElisabeth Johansson-Nogués (IBEI)

Available in video:

As a response to the migration crisis, the EU has not only revised its policies but also mobilized resources, introduced new tools, or adapted the existing ones to the changing context. While the debate at the policy level is burgeoning, instruments have been limitedly explored. What kind of geopolitical dynamics are EU migration policy instruments producing? How do they contribute to redesigning the EU-African geopolitical space? The article combines a policy instruments approach with a spatial perspective on the EU migration policy. Through the analysis of the 2015 EU Emergency Trust Fund for Africa, it raises the argument that migration policy instruments are powerful spatial practices that are shaping the EU-African geopolitical space by coordinating the EU’s and Member States’ priorities and understandings of migration. Overall, the paper suggests that research on the EU external relations, particularly in the realm of migration, should not only pay more attention to policy instruments but also map them in the targeted territories to avoid “cartographic traps” and better understand the impact of the policies under scrutiny.

Federica Zardo is Assistant Professor at the University of Vienna, Department of Political Science and Research Fellow at the Danube University Krems in the Department for Migration and Globalisation. She is a political scientist working at the intersection between International Relations and Public Policy, with an empirical focus on the EU´s external relations and the EU migration policy. Her research has been published in outlets such as the Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, GeopoliticsInternational Politics, Mediterranean Politics and the European Foreign Affairs Review. In addition to her research activities, she teaches courses on the EU foreign policy, European integration and EU migration policy at the University of Vienna.