Information campaigns and policy-making in the field of migration

  • In some countries, migration-discouraging campaigns have been launched. In Senegal, for example, a state-initiated information campaign was introduced to warn potential migrants of the dangers of crossing the Atlantic Ocean to the Canary Islands. Most aspiring migrants discredit this type of information;
  • The main challenge for social media campaigns in terms of changing attitudes or future behaviour among transit migrants is that their need for orientation is low, the situation in their home country is extremely difficult, and many already possess extensive knowledge on the difficulties of the journey;
  • Each campaign needs to take into consideration the specific context of migrants’ experiences. Broad campaigns targeting several countries, and different populations who are migrating for different reasons do not work;
  • Information provided by official sources is often so complex that many migrants have to turn to information agents, who translate the information into a comprehensible language and are more aware of what information migrants need. It is mostly highly-skilled migrants who can access complex information related to legal permits and migration regulations provided by official institutions.
  • Information should always be provided in the language of the target group.
  • Design of campaign and/or app/platform employed to disseminate information should always be adapted to the specificity of the target audience;
  • For illiterate migrants/migrants who have a low level of education, there should be audio data in their language so they can listen if they cannot read. Including Q&A sessions can be very useful as people can ask their questions.
  • TikTok is a very useful channel to reach out to the younger generation of migrants, as often they do not have time to read but would be willing to listen.


Brekke, J. P., and A. Beyer. (2019). Everyone wants to leave: Transit migration from Khartoum—The role of information and social media campaigns. Institutt for samfunnsforskning ISF Report 2019: 11.

Expert contribution, MIRROR conference ‘Migration in Focus: Addressing Informational Challenges in Humanitarian Actions’, 15-16th December 2021, Valletta (Malta).

Zijlstra, J., & van Liempt, I. (2017). Smart(phone) travelling: understanding the use and impact of mobile technology on irregular migration journeys. Int. J. Migration and Border Studies, Vol. 3, Nos. 2/3, pp.174–191.

Migration-Related Risks Caused by Misconceptions of Opportunities and Requirement

MIRROR has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation action program under grant agreement No 832921.

© All rights reserved