A productive summer for the MATILDE project with the publication of four new policy briefs! Within the EU Horizon 2020 project, focusing on the impact of migration on the local development of rural and mountain regions, new policy briefs examine four crucial aspects of migration in 13 studied regions. MATILDE researchers not only outline observed integration gaps but pursue the project objective of bringing forward possible solutions.
The Impact of Migrants on Rural Development introduces practical solutions and key policy recommendations for creating or improving existing conditions which can foster the positive impact of migrants on rural development. MATILDE Researchers from Austria, Bulgaria, Germany, Finland, Italy, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, and the United Kingdom emphasize challenges hindering the contribution of TCN to rural development: physical and digital immobility, problematic housing conditions, lack of work as well as lack of workforce and lack of cooperation and financing for rural development.
In the second policy brief the attention is drawn to the way in which Migration Is A Chance For Rural Economies. Previous MATILDE reports have shown that rapid and successful labor integration of migrants can counteract economic challenges in rural and mountain regions. These challenges are related to demographic changes, depopulation processes, outmigration of young people and the increase in the proportion of the elderly population resulting. Identified policy recommendations point to concrete solutions aimed at easing migrants’ access to rural labor markets by overcoming discrimation, legal restrictions and bureaucratic hurdles as for example recognition of foreign qualifications and assessment of “on-the-job” trainings.
The third policy brief explores The Interplay of Rural Regions, Migration and Legal Frameworks. It provides analysis of existing legal restrictions and bureaucratic barriers such as lack of quality standards in the asylum procedures, admission and accommodation as well as unrealistic perception of migrants and refugees expressed in negative narratives and anti-migrant political rhetoric. To minimize negative effects of structural discrimination on local, national, regional and European level MATILDE project suggest possible approaches highlighting for instance the need of cooperation between public and third sector organizations.
The fourth policy brief examines access to education as a crucial part of TCNs integration advancing the idea of Better Education of (young) TCNs as Basis for Economic and Social Integration in Rural Areas. Education and successful promotion of knowledge play a significant role in solving the challenges of migration as well as unlocking migration’s unseen potential and securing both personal and local development.
Migrants in studied regions face a wide range of obstacles as lack of recognition of qualifications, restrictive public integration efforts focusing mainly on (highly) qualified migrants, insufficient access to education opportunities and language courses, lack of access to child care (considered as a prerequisite for participating in integration courses), forced interruption of refugee children education.
With the goal to create an equitable, accessible and inclusive education system that provides everyone with the same individual and best possible support and offers them the opportunity to develop, MATILDE policy recommendations address concretely all problematic situations created by above-mentioned issues.