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MAFE - Migration between Africa and Europe


African migration has become a major concern for European policy-makers.

New policy measures are engaged, but they rely on a poor understanding of the underlying causes and consequences of African migration.

The MAFE project aims to overcome this lack of understanding by pursuing three interrelated objectives:

  • to create a unique data set on Afro-European migration. Comparable data will be collected in both sending and receiving countries, i.e. in sub-Saharan Africa and Europe. The project aims to apply a survey on Senegalese migration to new populations: Congolese and Ghanaians. The methodology used in the project is built upon keys studies on international migration in the world. The data will be representative, longitudinal and multilevel;

  • to provide new analyses through innovative techniques. Using this new data, the MAFE project will employ methods of longitudinal data analysis to provide policy-makers with new insights on the changing patterns and determinants of migrations between Africa and Europe, as well as on the socioeconomic changes associated with international migration;

  • to foster a policy dialogue. MAFE fully integrates a process of policy dialogue in its design. Various stakeholders have already been consulted and will follow the development of the project. Research findings will be disseminated through various channels to reach a large audience (working papers, policy briefs, etc.). The MAFE database will be made available for the research community at the end of the project.

The overall idea underpinning the project is that migration must not be seen only as a one-way flow from Africa to Europe. Rather, we argue that return migration, circulation and transnational practices are significant and must be understood in order to correctly design migration policies. Hence the project denomination: “Migration between Africa and Europe”.

Proposal: 217206
Funding scheme: Collaborative project (small and medium scale focused research project)
Activity: Activity 3 - Major trends in society and their implications
Research area: Demographic changes
Topic: Migration
Estimated EC contribution: €1 498 954
Starting date: 01.10.2008
Duration: 51 months
Title:Migration between Africa and Europe
Acronym: MAFE
Keywords: -
Web site:
Coordinator: Institut National d'Etudes Démographiques
FR - Paris
Partners' List:
  • Université Catholique de Louvain,
    Institute of Demography
  • Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar,
    IPDSR Senegal
    Papa SAKHO
  • University of Kinshasa,
    Department des Sciences,
    de la Population et du Dévelopment
    The Democratic Republic of Congo
    José MANGALU
  • University of Ghana,
    Centre for Migration Studies
    Peter QUARTEY
  • University Pompeu Fabra,
    Department of Political and Social Sciences
    Pau BAIZAN
  • Forum Internationale ed Europeo
    di Ricerche sull’Immigrazione - FIERI
    Eleonora CASTAGNONE
  • University of Sussex,
    Sussex Centre for Migration Research
    Richard BLACK
  • Maastricht University,
    Dpt of Technology & Society Studies
    The Netherlands
    Valentina MAZZUCATO
  • Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas,
    Research Group on Demographic Dynamics
EC Scientific Officer: DG RTD.B
Research achievements: MAFE policy brief - "Changing patterns of migration between Africa and Europe: Departures, trajectories & returns" (January 2013) ( 518KB)

MAFE policy brief - "Factors of migration between Africa & Europe: Assessing the role of education, family & policy" (January 2013) ( 418KB)

MAFE policy brief - "African migrants at work: Labour market integration in Europe & re-integration of returnees" (January 2013) ( 490KB)

MAFE policy brief - "Migrant families: Living together or across national borders?" (January 2013) ( 422KB)

MAFE policy brief - "Migration between Africa and Europe" (June 2010) ( 355KB)