On Wednesday the 24th of January, the EPRC hosted Prof Paul James Cardwell for a seminar presentation on: “Responding to Europe's migration 'crisis': the relationship between Law and 'new governance”. The talk was based on Prof Cardwell’s research regarding migration and European Union law and governance.
The recent migration crisis, generated by flow of migrants from outside Europe, has been challenging for European and national policy-makers. This was even more the case at the EU level given the complexity and interplay between national and European regulatory competences in this area. On migration, European law often co-exists with national and other international obligations. Under these circumstances, EU external migration is increasingly being dealt with by several policy programmes relating to foreign policy or the area of freedom, security and justice (AFSJ). Instead of relying on legal instruments, many of the latter seem to favour the use of various new governance and non-traditional “tools”. This creates a legal gap which can affect individual legal migrants and is problematic from two points of view, as argued by Prof Cardwell. First, new governance “tools”, for dealing with migration, operate outside legislative frameworks are difficult to track and are not open to legally scrutiny. Second, all individuals are related to as “migrants”, which makes it particularly problematic to understand if tools are in compliance with international law. This may lead to EU treaty values not being respect and has potential implications for human rights.
The discussion with the audience centred on issues of good governance, on the EU’s international obligations in the area and how external migration is being dealt with in other non-European countries