Asylum diversity in the European Union: A case study of residence permit distribution to asylum seekers in Sweden and Finland

University essay from Lunds universitet/Statsvetenskapliga institutionen

Abstract: The ongoing refugee crisis has divided the European Union. While some states shelter hundreds of thousands of refugees, others only grant asylum to a handful. This phenomenon is creating a demographic rift inside the union and is also causing internal quarrels over joint responsibility, which possibly could undermine the existence of the organization. In this thesis we search for the potential causes of the intra-organizational discrepancy by examining Sweden and Finland. These two states have approximately the same prerequisites for granting asylums, but vary greatly in number. In order to determine what causes this incongruity the states will be analyzed with two variables. The first variable examines the major political parties’ refugee policy, through framing theory. The second variable analyses the Migration Boards through Max Weber’s bureaucracy theory and scrutinizes the Director Generals of these organizations. Both variables result in sub-conclusions, which in the end are merged into one. The final conclusion determines that both variables are jointly contributing to the Swedish-Finnish discrepancy with the states having different political foundational frames, varying levels of bureaucracy of the Migration Boards and different approaches towards immigration from the Director Generals of the Migration Boards.

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