More female asylum seekers with higher education selected for asylum

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Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

Female refugees and irregular migrants with a tertiary education had a greater chance of being selected for entry to a European asylum country, a new study finds.

According to a new research paper entitled ‘Refugees’ and Irregular Migrants’ Self-Selection into Europe: Who Migrates Where?,’ female refugees and irregular migrants aged between 25-64, holding a tertiary education and escaping a major conflict, were more likely to be positively discriminated.

The report, which assesses data on the arrival of around 1.4 million asylum seekers across 2015 and 2016, found that 0.057% of females fleeing from a ‘Major conflict’ were positively selected for entry. Around 0.028% were selected from ‘Minor or no-conflict’ countries.  Of those with Secondary Education, those selected from Major Conflicts numbered 0.046% and 0.001% from Minor or No Conflict.

This was similar but slightly higher than males which were recorded as only a few percentage points lower.

For Major Conflicts, males with Tertiary education accounted for 0.053% and 0.008% for Minor or No Conflict. For Secondary Education, this accounted for 0.045% of those selected from Major Conflict areas and -0.010% for Minor or No Conflict.

The same trend can be seen with the positive self-selection from major conflict countries to Germany during the 2015-2016 period.

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The figures show that 0.126% of females with a Tertiary education were selected for entry compared with 0.072% of males.  Likewise 0.042% of females with a Secondary Education were selected compared with 0.033% of males with the same level of educational attainment.

Overall, the IFO Institute research also found that 77% of those surveyed during the investigation cited conflict and persecution as their reasoning for leaving their country of origin.

This was compared with 21% of those whom economic reasons were the root cause. As for natural disaster and environmental issues, only 2% named this example.

The Director of the IFO Center for International Institutional Comparisons and Migration Research Panu Poutvaara, explained that, ‘Contrary to conventional perception, we document that refugees and irregular migrants who arrived in Europe via the Mediterranean routes in 2015 and 2016 and escaped conflicts are more educated relative to the national average in their country of origin. We also study how these people differ in terms of their demographic characteristics from those who remained in their country of origin. In addition, the information we provide helps to plan appropriate integration measures in the destination countries.’

The full report can be viewed here