A Systems Model of Worker Mobility Forecasts between the CEEC10 and EU15 Countries

Document Type


Presentation Date


Conference Name

Midwest Political Science Association Conference

Conference Location

Chicago, IL


Predictions of the mass movement of workers from the CEEC10 states to the EU15 countries were common in the popular press during the run-up to the former's accession to the EU in 2004 and 2007. These forecasts induced many EU15 politicians to take advantage of a CEEC10 worker mobility derogation that was included in each of the latter's EU accession treaties. That action created considerable tension within the organization and clashed with the EU's commitment to the free movement of all factors of production. It also ignored much of the EU's own research on the question of the predicted magnitude of this phenomenon. So, was invoking that derogation actually necessary? In the continuation of an on-going project dealing with this subject, I argue that it probably was not. This paper utilizes an underused method in political science, systems modeling, to contend that, given certain assumptions about the economic conditions in both regions, the predicted volume of CEEC10 worker movement should have been fairly modest. It also suggests that economic factors (GDP differences) matter more than political ones (use or disuse of the worker migration derogation by different EU15 member states) in determining worker movement.


Political Science

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