Seeking Asylum in the European Union

Seeking Asylum in the European Union: Critical Perspectives on the Second Phase of the Common European Asylum System

Seeking asylum in the European Union (EU) today is as complex as the EU asylum system itself: while different forms of protection exist in the Union, they do not remain easily accessible and are sometimes not tailored to the specific protection needs of asylum-seekers. This unfortunate state of affairs is nowadays commonly recognised by scholars and practitioners in the field, and also by the very EU institutions that have recently carried out what was intended to be a comprehensive recast of EU legislation within the framework of the Common European Asylum System (CEAS) (finalised in June 2013). This so-called ‘second generation’ of EU asylum instruments have not, however, solved all the problems posed by the earlier system. There remain multiple hurdles which impede asylum-seekers from benefiting from effective protection in EU Member States.

The outcome of an international conference organised under the auspices of the Refugee Law Initiative, this project gathers the most promising early career researchers, at both PhD and postdoctoral level, to focus on the specific problems raised by the CEAS and its second generation of asylum instruments. This project concentrates on specific issues raised by the recast EU asylum instruments, rather than depicting the broader changes brought about by such amendments. The aim is thus to provide further insight and critical analysis of the specific problems that scholars and policy makers will have to face – and address – under these ‘new’ CEAS instruments. A broad range of issues are identified and covered, relating to access to protection, qualification for refugee status and the further problems raised by and opportunities missed in developing this amended set of asylum instruments.