The purpose of the ITFLOWS project is to:

To design models to predict migration in the EU 

To develop a trustworthy tool the EUMigraTool to be exclusively used by municipalities and civil society organisations 

To provide policy recommendations for receiving migration flows in the EU in accordance with human rights  

To identify sentiment that could lead to potential risks of tension between  people residing in the EU (EU citizens, their non-EU family members, migrants including refugees) to protect vulnerable people 

To provide policy recommendations solutions for optimising integration of refugees in host countries 

The Challenges

The prediction of migration is a major challenge for the European Union as well as for many different stakeholder groups that provide resources and assistance to migrants, including refugees, at different stages of their migration process . In order to develop better strategies and instruments among policy makers and practitioners in the field of migration, we still need a deeper understanding of this phenomenon. 

Reliable prediction of migrants, including refugees, is crucial for better allocation of resources from a humanitarian point of view. Yet, to date, there are no accurate large-scale studies that can reliably predict new migrants, including refugees, arriving in Europe. The majority of data-driven approaches for prediction so far have focused solely on one specific country of origin or destination in each study.  

In the EU, some Member States (e.g. Sweden),  are using their own individual models to forecast the number of migrants, including refugees, arriving in their territories but each of them uses different data sources and timeframes for prediction.  

The general problem is a lack of heterogenous datasets in the field of migration and asylum in Europe. Numerous international, national, and non-governmental organisations (NGO’s) are currently gathering data on migratory movements, the number of refugees, and available resources for humanitarian aid, but they are all doing it independently from each other and with limited scope. Consequently, policy designs in the area of migration, asylum, human rights, and integration often lack appropriate foresight. 

One of the most evident outcomes of the lack of effective migration flow predictions and integration strategies in some Member States is the gradual increase in the risk of tension arising between people residing in the EU (EU citizens, their non-EU family members, migrants including refugees). Law enforcement authorities, NGOs and the media have already reported a high number of incidents of racist violence against migrants, including refugees, in 2019, with several cases resulting in severe injury. 

Negative sentiments towards migrants, including refugees, are one of the main reasons of tensions between people residing in the EU (EU citizens, their non-EU family members, migrants including refugees), which may lead to discriminatory acts, abuses or other hate crimes. ITFLOWS, based on the analysis of Twitter daat, identifies sentiment that could suggest potential risks of tension within different EU member states. ITFLOWS studies such risks from a bottom-up approach with existing Twitter data on sentiments linked to migration. The study identifies the causes of variation of sentiments and their connection to risks of tension, proposing policy strategies with the goal to minimise these tensions through social-economic strategies and recommendations for national/ EU policy makers. Policy solutions are geared towards recognizing potential radical/racist attitudes on the part of EU citizens and residents, whereas solutions for practitioners will focus on supporting migrants, including refugees, gaining access to the labour market, housing, education, and health care.  

The EUMigraTool provides supportive information to help first-line-practitioners, second-level reception organisations and municipalities in their decision-making processes. It provides modular solutions based on the prediction of migration flows and the identification of sentiment that could lead to risks of tensions between people residing in the EU (EU citizens, their non-EU family members, migrants including refugees) 

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