This study examines the process of appealing against initially negative asylum decisions in different countries in Europe. We are interested in the extent to which asylum appellants are able to take part in the proceedings. Thematically our work is focusing on a number of research topics, these include:

  • The role(s) of technology in the courtroom
  • The effect that a ‘courtroom atmosphere’ has on proceedings
  • The publicness of asylum appeals
  • The extent to which appeal procedure can and/or should be consistent between cases and (inter)national boundaries
  • What it means to talk about procedural ‘fairness’
  • What helpful practices can be found to increase appellants’ participation and ease communication in general in the hearings

For more information, see here.

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ASYFAIR is a multi-disciplinary and multi-methodology study. It will collect qualitative and quantitative data through a variety of research tools. Furthermore, we conduct research in a variety of EU countries, such as the UK, France, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Italy and Greece. We also collaborate with other research groups, as well as disseminate our research at academic, professional and public conferences and events.

Research Methods per country (EN)

Court Ethnographies


Source:  Manfred Steger from Pixabay 

We are conducting observations of asylum appeals at hearing centres in France, Germany, Austria, Belgium and the UK.  Various courts in Europe will be visited by our researchers, who collect both qualitative ethnographic data and quantitative survey data. The court ethnography is the key source of data for the ASYFAIR study.

You can find more information about our court ethnographies here.




Image by Tumisu from Pixabay

We are also  examining the way hearings are experienced by different groups including appellants and legal professionals, which will involve interviewing them. During interviews we might ask personal questions such as the professional and personal experience and views of asylum appeal procedures.

You can find more information about our interviews here.


Online Survey

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mcmurryjulie from Pixabay


Next to collecting data via court ethnographies and interviews in various EU countries, ASYFAIR also conducts an online survey with various professional actors in asylum adjudication to get a broad overview of some of the key foci of the study.

You can find more information about our online survey here.


Data Use, Consent & Protection

The data will be used to write academic research that will be published in academic journals and discussed at academic conferences. In addition, as the study aims to improve asylum adjudication, we may use anonymised data to present to policy makers, the public and the media (e.g. in form of public reports).

Researchers obtain verbal or written consent from all research participants during the interviews. You can find information about consent here.

In accordance with current Data Protection legislation, all the information we collect is strictly confidential, and will be anonymised to the fullest extent possible, including taking out identifying names, job titles and responsibilities, places, as well as altering unusual events, characteristics and aspects of participants and the things they describe or that are associated with them where appropriate in order to protect anonymity.

You can find more information about data protection here.


Research Findings

Image by Mudassar Iqbal from Pixabay

Preliminary findings from the project will be made available in 2019. The project itself will run until 2021 in order to carefully analyse and understand the observations, and a final report will be made available in 2021.

You can find our research output here


We are interesting in research collaborations with other research teams and institutions, as well as disseminate our research findings at academic, professional and public conferences, events and meetings.