The politicization and framing of migration in West Africa: transition to democracy as a game changer?

Istanbul, 15th January, 2022:-  In a bid to have a clear understanding on how West African policymakers frame migration, two researchers from the Vrije University of Brussels have analyzed politicization and framing of migration in The Gambia, a small West African country seen as a good case study to verify the so-called ‘regime effect’ in migration policymaking after it underwent a democratic transition in 2016.


“The analysis shows that the transition to democracy did not lead so much to a policy change, but to a change of migration politics on the most salient sub-issue: cooperation on forced return with migrant-receiving states,” the authors – Omar N. Cham and Ilke Adam – said in their newly published research article.


Relying on newspaper data between 2009 and 2020, the article states that democratization “led to a clear multiplication of national and international claims-makers on this topic, polarizing policy positions for and against cooperation, and a diversification of justification frames.”


“The paper shows how democratic policymakers in the Global South, differently from autocracies or Western democratic states, struggle with creative and diversifying justification frames to cater the needs of both international donors and electorates.”


According to the researchers, a total of 129 newspaper articles from three traditional and two online media houses were analyzed during the study. The newspaper outlets “used in this paper were selected based on their popularity, quality, circulation and extent of available archives.”


You can read the full article here. 


AGAST Media Team 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *