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Project description

The freedom to move and reside freely within the EU allows every European citizen to live and work in another member state. This right has been increasingly used during the financial crisis by young Europeans who migrated to seek work and life opportunities in countries that offer better prospects. Several barriers occur before, during or after moving and problems are reported in relation to legislation, administrative procedures but also stereotypes and discriminatory practices.

The project objective is to look into the reality of free movement from the viewpoint of young Europeans (age 25-35) who exercise or plan to exercise this right and:

-          Identify real and perceived obstacles and barriers that they face;

-          Identify practices that promote or hinder the enjoyment of this right;

-          Raise awareness within young people on their rights and within national and EU bodies on barriers and ways to address them; 

-          Propose solutions (legislative and non-legislative) for making the right to free movement effective.


Legal and empirical research in 15 EU member states that have experienced increased outgoing migration (GR, CY, ES, PT, PL, EE, BG, RO) or incoming migration (DE, BE, AT, NL, UK, FR, IT) in the last 4 years.

  • Data collection and analysis
  • Cross country and comparative analysis
  • Capacity building, awareness raising and dissemination

Who benefits how?

-       National and EU authorities improve their knowledge and awareness on barriers to free movement faced by young people;

-       EU citizens increase the awareness on their possibilities for free movement;

-       National authorities as well as EU movers benefit from proposed evidence-based solutions for eliminating barriers to free movement at national and european levels. Practitioners benefit from good practices, collected and disseminated within the project.  


Project result at a glance (German)...  (pdf)

Manual for young people: Addressing myths and stereotypes among young
people on the move...

Manual for authorities on good practices related to the freedom of movement in the EU... (pdf)

Project website...



Project team

Isabella Meier

Markus M÷stl

Klaus Starl

Maddalena Vivona


Project partners

The Centre for European Constitutional Law (leading partner) (GR)

European Forum for Migration Studies (DE)

Instituto Universitario de Estudios sobre Migraciones at the Universidad Pontificia Comillas (ES)

Centre for Sociological Research, KULeuven (BE)

Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, University of London (UK)

Institute of Baltic Studies (EE),

the Institute for Public Policy (RO),

Cooperation for the Development of Emerging Countries (IT),

Institut Franšais des droits et libertÚs (FR),

Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights (PL),

Center for the Study of Democracy (BG),

Centro de Estudos Intervencao Social (PT),

Symfiliosi (CY)

Art.1 (NL)


Project data

November 2015 ľ November 2017