There is increasing policy interest in the European Union to better
plan and prepare for future migration flows. This is reflected in the
growing number of reports that use expert knowledge to anticipate
migration trends and develop migration scenarios. In this report, the
IOM’s Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (GMDAC), in partnership
with the Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI),
examines the potential and limitations of using expert opinion to
predict future migration. This pilot study combines two approaches,
namely, migration scenarios and Delphi expert surveys, to assess the
implications and uncertainty of immigration scenarios for the European
Union in 2030. The results demonstrate the high level of uncertainty
and disagreement among experts about how basic drivers of migration
– such as multilateralism and economic convergence – might shape
future immigration to the European Union. While expert advice is
useful for stimulating strategic, long-term thinking and discussion, the
results highlight the limitations of using experts to improve operational
preparedness.

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