This research report seeks to shed more light on the current flow of Syrian asylum seekers to Europe.Since the outbreak of the conflict in Syria, it is estimated that millions of people have fled their homes.As of October 2015, 700,000 of them have declared asylum in the European Union. Although most European states that are receiving Syrian refugees have signed and ratified the 1951 Convention, it is a challenge to guarantee refugeesﾒ basic rights: given the lack of money, the lack of an infrastructure to manage large and sudden influxes; and, above all, unclear political strategies. The flawed response is
also generated by a failure to understand the factors that are leading Syrian families to make such a dangerous journey to Europe, factors that push them to waste all their savings and jump on boats leading them to unknown lands. Indeed, despite the high political and humanitarian interest around growing global migration levels, there are very few systems in place to monitor the migration flows, especially in the Middle East and towards Europe. Our knowledge of irregular migration is often plagued with fragmented perspectives on the socio-cultural dynamics of the journey, the smugglertraveller relationship and their community dimensions. Moreover, there is no exhaustive data collection to support humanitarian organization programmes in terms of easing the movement of refugees, safely and with dignity. The lack of systematic investigation of migration in Europe and in
the Middle East generates fears and misconceptions among the population at large; while, in order to respond effectively to the emergency, more evidence-based knowledge is urgently needed to share as widely as possible. The present report aims at filling this information gap through systematic and participatory data collection exercises. It reports data and information from Syrian refugees in Jordan and Lebanon about push and pull factors, protection risks and threats, and the availability of
information before and during their journey across the Balkans.