Technical review of the PERCEPTIONS project

Since PERCEPTIONS aims to identify narratives, images and perceptions of the EU abroad and to identify how they could influence migration, cause security threats and radicalisation, both qualitative and quantitative empirical reserach are an inherent part of our project. To this end, with particular regard to the WP2 – Research, WP3 – Investigate, WP4- Analyse and WP8 – Disseminate, a number of activities such as a quantitative survey, qualitative interviews involving migrants and refugees, as well as interviews and focus group discussions with Law Enforcement Agencies, practitioners, local authorities, civil society and NGOs are carried out, as well as a social media analysis.

Protection of personal data of the participants involved by the project is of our concern, regardless of the country in which the research is put forward. The Consortium recognizes the relevance of addressing the legal and ethical issues associated with the project and the importance to ensure privacy and safety to the individuals involved.

On the 19th May 2020, the Consortium discussed together with experts and members of DG Home – DG for Migration and Home Affairs, FRONTEX and the Research Executive Agency on PERCEPTIONS’ main accomplishments as well on the research-ethical issues, such as anonymity, confidentiality, privacy, data protection, ethics consideration and mitigation measures. In this respect, partners provided the European Commission with an overview of the PERCEPTIONS activities and its tools when approaching these issues. For instance, partners stated that, when publishing or disseminating project’s findings on social media (WP8 – Disseminate), the Consortium is always evaluating and taking into consideration possible negative consequences on participants, as stigmatisation, discrimination or intimidation.

The technical review has provided the Consortium with new input and constructive feedback on how PERCEPTIONS complies with ethical standards and guidelines of the European Union related to privacy and data protection.