Deciding on EU External Migration Policy: The Member States and the Mobility Partnerships

N. Reslow*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Although EU migration policy has become increasingly supranationalised, the member states still find ways to limit the involvement of the supranational institutions. Legal migration in particular is still seen by member states as their 'domain reservee'. However, member states will still sometimes choose cooperation at the EU level. How can this choice be explained? The article argues that member states cooperate at the EU level where this can help them to achieve their nationally formulated preferences. In the decision-making process on the Mobility Partnerships, member states demonstrated their determination to remain in control, resulting in a limited role for the Commission and no role at all for the Parliament and Court of Justice. Some member states identified a fit between the Mobility Partnerships and their national migration policies, and therefore chose to participate. Other member states were very opposed to the Mobility Partnerships, because they contradict national migration policy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)223-239
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of European Integration
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2012


  • EU decision-making
  • EU migration policy
  • Mobility Partnerships
  • member states


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