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CLANDESTINO - Undocumented Migration: Counting the Uncountable Data and Trends Across Europe

This interdisciplinary project is to support policy makers in designing and implementing appropriate policies regarding undocumented migration. It covered 11 EU countries
Southern Europe - Greece, Italy, France and Spain
Western and Central Europe – the Netherlands, UK, Germany and Austria
Central Eastern Europe - Poland, Hungary and Slovakia

The project looked also at transit migration in countries/regions used as key ‘stepping stones’ by undocumented migrants in route to the EU, notably Turkey, Ukraine and one Maghreb country.


• To provide an inventory of data and estimates on undocumented migration (stocks and flows) in selected EU countries
• To analyse these data comparatively
• To discuss the ethical and methodological issues involved in the collection of data, the elaboration of estimates and their use
• To propose new methods for evaluating and classifying data
• To consider the factors affecting the shift between legal and undocumented status among migrant populations (where relevant)

Database on Irregular Migration in Europe – provides an inventory and a critical appraisal of data and estimates related to undocumented migration in the European Union and selected Member States; accessible online since February 2009

Duration: 2007-2009
Funded by: 6th Framework Programme (EC, DG Research)
Project coordination: Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP). The project consortium involves four academic partners, one policy institute and one NGO.
Contact: Veronika Bilger (ICMPD)

Information Brochure
download (229KB)


All project outcomes are available at the Clandestino website.

Final Report

Comparative policy briefs
• Dita Vogel (2009): Size and Development of Irregular Migration to the EU
• Franck Düvell (2009): Pathways into Irregularity: The Social Construction of Irregular Migration
• Bastian Vollmer (2009): Political Discourses on Irregular Migration in the EU

Country policy briefs
• Albert Kraler, David Reichel and Christina Hollomey (2009): Irregular Migration Policy Brief - Austria
Link in English and German.
• Policy Briefs on other countries - Link

Country reports
• Albert Kraler, David Reichel and Christina Hollomey (2009): Undocumented migration. Counting the Uncountable. Country report - Austria
• Country reports on other countries - Link

Methodology report
Michael Jandl, Dita Vogel, Krystyna Iglicka, Albert Kraler (2008) Report on Methodological Issues.

Related Publications
Special Issue of International Migration Journal 49(5), October 2011, Irregular Migration from a European Perspective. More information available here.
• Dita Vogel, Anna Triandafyllidou, Franck Düvell (2011): Introduction. International Migration 49(5), pp. 48-52.
• Michael Jandl (2011): Methods, Approaches and Data Sources for Estimating Stocks of Irregular Migrants. International Migration 49(5), pp. 53-77.
• Dita Vogel, Vesela Kovacheva, Hannah Prescott (2011): The Size of the Irregular Migrant Population in the European Union - Counting the Uncountable? International Migration 49(5), pp.78-96.
• Albert Kraler, David Reichel (2011): Measuring Irregular Migration and Population Flows - What Available Data Can Tell. International Migration 49(5), pp. 97-128.
• Thanos Maroukis, Krystyna Iglicka, Katarzyna Gmaj (2011): Irregular Migration and Informal Economy in Southern and Central-Eastern Europe: Breaking the Vicious Cycle? International Migration 49(5), pp. 129-156.