Fair global economy is the most effective means of combating the causes of flight

Researchers at the Kassel University of Applied Sciences have investigated the connection between the causes of flight and European policies. The study results and the initiative of the Vienna Chamber of Labour "The right not to have to leave.

Bild: AK Wien.

When the topic of flight and migration is discussed and the possible reasons why people leave their homes, the finger is often pointed at others. Whether war, hunger or poverty, the causes of flight are usually sought exclusively where the actual drama finds expression. "But this view falls short. The real causes of flight lie deeper, in an unjust global system that generates poverty, hunger, climate heating and wars," explains President of the Vienna Chamber of Labour Renate Anderl.

"Instead of merely providing aid on the ground, which is gladly pronounced as a simple solution without concrete action, it would be time to question our way of production and life, which in other places of the world leads to people having to leave their homes," says Anderl.

Therefore, the Vienna Chamber of Labour together with trade unions and NGOs (medico international, weltumspannend arbeiten, pro asyl, VIDC, GPA, PRO-GE and ÖGB International) has launched the initiative: "The right not to have to leave - European policy and causes of flight". For this purpose, a diverse week of events will take place.

The basis is the study of the same name, which the political scientists Prof. Dr. Sonja Buckel and Judith Kopp from the Kassel University have prepared on behalf of the Vienna Chamber of Labor. The study takes a critical look at the current debate on the causes of flight. Instead of one-sidedly locating them in the corrupt and undemocratic constitution of many countries of origin, the study addresses how global inequality and the climate crisis, driven in particular by European policy, (co-)produce these causes of flight.

Study author Sonja Buckel comments: "Since the 1980s, international and European migration policy has placed the causes of flight and migration primarily in the countries of origin. Empirically, this understanding and the resulting measures can be described as a failure. A realistic migration policy must locate the causes of flight in global relations of inequality."

"It is a matter of opposing those who try to tear asylum and migration policy out of the global context, to narrow it nationalistically and to suggest securing national prosperity via promises based on racism. Instead, migration policy must be understood - and addressed - as a moment of the global question of justice," adds Judith Kopp.


Study presentation

The study will be presented via Zoom on June 7 from 3pm - 5pm by the study authors and Lukas Oberndorfer, Officer of the EU and International Affairs Department:


There will also be a number of events on the topic from June 7 - 11. In addition, a brochure has been produced in which the topic of the causes of flight is dealt with in a compact and clear manner. All documents including the event program can be found under the following link:European Policy and Causes of Flight | Arbeiterkammer Wien.


Sonja Buckel
Kassel University
Professor for Political Theory
E-Mail: sonja.buckel@uni-kassel.de