Submission Date


Document Type



International Relations

Second Department

Modern Languages (French)


Johannes Karreth

Second Adviser

Celine Brossillon

Committee Member

Rebecca Evans

Committee Member

Scott Deacle

Department Chair

Rebecca Evans

Department Chair

Matthew Mizenko

Project Description

Following an increase in displaced persons globally in the 2000s and 2010s, governments around the world have been required to adjust their response to the growing need for refuge. Even internally within countries, there was variation in how the governing political party revised asylum policy. This thesis seeks to explain that variation in asylum policy in France between 2007 and 2019 under three different parties in power. Its explanations focus on the ideology and electoral incentives of governing parties and it focuses on the general economic status of the country. Based on literature and historical context, three factors are primarily considered: ideology, structural conditions, and the rise of the far right. Among these, ideology can be further subdivided into cultural protectionism and Euroscepticism; and, structural conditions can be further subdivided into unemployment and the percentage of foreign born persons in France in a given year. The thesis develops a new empirical measure of asylum policy. Using this measure, some but not all of the five potential explanations are found to explain asylum policy by the three parties considered in this study.