Regions benefitting from returning migrants (Re-Turn)
Regions benefitting from returning migrants
Start date: Apr 30, 2011,
End date: Apr 29, 2014
Economically motivated migration of people from the New Member States to high-income countries is currently dominating international migration flows in Europe thanks to the free right to work in any other EU Member State. This is intensifying a brain drain process of many regions. On the other hand statistics show willingness of people to come back to their countries, however this process is often associated with significant problems of reintegration and regions neglecting of returning migrants to support regional economic development of their countries.This led to the realisation of the importance of this policy issue and was the starting point for development of Re-Turn project as attracting and supporting returning migrants not only improves the regional knowledge base but also strengthens intercultural competence of innovative actors in an increasingly internationally networked world.Therefore projects main activities are linked to development and implementation of services needed to support migrants in their wish to return, promoting of returning migrants as a source of innovative enterprise development, creating framework conditions for retaining human capital. The project sets to develop, test and implement joint strategies, new support policies, tools and services in participating regions to achieve this in a sustainable way. Achievements: The project Re-Turn aims at supporting emigrants from Central Europe (CE) in their desire to return home. Regional and national administrations, research organisations, regional development agencies and regional labour offices in Re-Turn's case study regions collaborate to inform emigrants about career & life opportunities in their home regions and to help returnees in reintegrating after their experience abroad. Since its start in May 2011, Re-Turn's transnational research advisory group studied current migration flows in CE resulting in a Comparative Report on Re-migration Trends as well as the Online Visualization Platform (http://return-platform.um.si/). Existing return initiatives in CE were analyzed in the Baseline Report 'Returning people to the homeland: Tools and methods supporting remigrants in a European context'. This report was then transferred into the Re-Turn Toolkit, which assists stakeholders to develop own measures to support return migration. From 12/2011-08/2012 an online survey was conducted among 2,000 migrants from 8 countries. Furthermore, a business survey investigated regional companies human resource needs and their attitudes towards return migrants as potential workforce. In total, 110 interviews were held with business representatives all across CE. Both surveys' results were presented and discussed in regional workshops and they are documented in two major reports. Finally, an International Working Paper on 'Barriers for a Successful Capitalization on Returning Migrants' points to potential fields of intervention. All outputs are available on the project website (www.re-migrants.eu). Supported by a transnational advisory board, regional task forces - including political stakeholders, entrepreneurs, migrants and administration officers - met to discuss the barriers and potentials associated with return migration in their own case study regions and prepared own pilot activities to support return migration. In 2013, these pilot activities were implemented and tested. Pilots included 8 telephone hotlines, 2 ambassador networks, 2 remigration platforms to re-attract emigrants; 3 one-stop-shops to assist return migrants re-integration were tested; 2 entrepreneurial training schemes started to help return migrants in becoming re-employed at home. During a transnational meeting in Kielce (PL; 09/2013), first results of the pilot testing were discussed among project partners. Final results of these pilots are now used to derive a handbook on return assistance for regional stakeholders in other regions across Europe, a transnational strategy for the support of return migration in CE and 8 regional action plans which should ensure a sustainable assistance for return migrants in case study regions. On 2 April 2014, lessons learnt will be discussed in a Policy Workshop in Brussels (BE). On 4-6 June 2014, all findings and conclusions will be presented during the Final Conference in Prague (CZ).
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