16 Sep 2008

Benchmarking Integration in the EU: Analyzing the debate on integration indicators and moving it forward

Sergio Carrera


Since the Justice and Home Affairs Council meeting of 19 November 2004, benchmarking has been presented as one of the main elements of the EU’s framework for integrating third-country nationals (TCNs), to be used to “adjust policy, evaluate progress on integration and to make the exchange of information more effective”. The JHA Council Conclusions on Strengthening Integration Policies in the European Union of 12-13 June 2007 gave the political mandate for the European Commission to promote the development of common indicators and indices. And quite recently, the Commission Communication on a Common Immigration Policy for Europe of 17 June 2008 reasserted the importance of using benchmarking as a policy tool. Given the growing importance of benchmarking integration as one of the key future policy priorities in the EU, the Bertelsmann Foundation commissioned the Justice and Home Affairs Section at CEPS to conduct an analysis of the conceptual premises and practical methodologies through which benchmarking the integration of TCNs at the EU level is being conducted. The study also evaluates the current deficits and prospects for new benchmarking architectures and techniques.

This study, commissioned by the Bertelsmann Foundation, is available for free downloading at its website.