Serbia and the migration crisis: The power of framing

Publication Date

January 2018

Document Type

Contribution to a Book

Publication Title

Political and Military Sociology: The European Refugee Crisis


Karthika Sasikumar, Danijela Dudley




This chapter examines Serbia’s policy towards refugees or migrants in 2015 and 2016. It shows that the Serbian government framed the population movement as “transit through Serbia.” The chapter explores the reasons behind the choice of this “transit” frame. It describes the positive and negative consequences-both intended and unintended-of this choice. The chapter also describes the concept of framing and elaborates on the claim that the “transit” frame was dominant in the government’s presentation of the refugee crisis inside Serbia, as well as to foreign audiences. It explains the reasons why this frame was chosen. The transit frame had consequences, some of which were unexpected. The chapter focuses on political scientists to contribute to the conversation, by analyzing the frame in which migration is presented to domestic and international audiences.

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