This report draws on recent scholarly advances to better specify what narratives are and to explain variation in their popularity before considering how their effects on immigration policy preferences varies. The study then considers the popularity of eight simple migration narratives — four positive, four negative — in eight countries across the Euro-Mediterranean region today using recent World Values Survey data. Finally, the extent to which belief in each of these narratives affects one’s preferred immigration policy is tested.
Discussions on how to increase the number of returns (including voluntary ones), while conducting them in a humane way, and achieving sustainable reintegration are high on the agenda of both Turkey and the European Union (EU). In April 2021, the European Commission took a step toward with the creation of a common EU return system, releasing its first Strategy on Voluntary Return and Reintegration. This Strategy aims to increase the number of voluntary returns, but also to improve EU Member States’ coordination on their respective Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (AVRR) programmes and make reintegration in origin countries more sustainable. To achieve these objectives, the EU needs to secure cooperation with countries of origin and transit, such as Turkey. Voluntary return and reintegration may be one area where there are tangible opportunities for Turkey and EU/EU Member States to build on some converging goals.
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