The impact of the politicisation of immigration in the Visegr^d countries on decision-making in the European Commission

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Since the refugee crisis of 2015, immigration became ever more politicised, bringing significant consequences to the EU. The politicisation of immigration puts pressure on the European Commission, which must safeguard its reputation and legitimacy. To break the long-standing stalemate and policy deadlock in the field of migration and asylum, the European Commission proposed the 'New Pact on Migration and Asylum' in 2020. This thesis examines the responsiveness of the European Commission and the extent to which the decision-making behind this pact has been influenced by the politicisation of immigration, particularly in the Visegrád countries. In order to do this, the thesis conducts a process tracing on the New Pact of Migration and Asylum and draws upon the theory of reputation and legitimacy management. In doing so, this research positions itself in the theoretical debate about politicisation and the responsiveness of the European Commission, while studying the new angle of policy formulation on a controversial issue. Moreover, this research provides notable findings for European Union citizens, European Commission officials, policymakers, asylum seekers and refugees. The key finding of this thesis is that the New Pact on Migration and Asylum has been substantially weakened, partly because of the politicisation of immigration in the Visegrád countries, and partly due to reluctant Member States in the Council of the European Union.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen