We are in 2035. An immigrant candidate wants to settle in France, but the analysis of his actions through big data suggests to the authorities that he will not integrate properly. His request is denied. Science fiction? Not sure, thinks the OECD.
In the coming years, climate change, geopolitical hazards and aging should continue to guide migratory flows. But other elements such as new technologies are likely to "change the game", anticipates the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in a document presented in Paris on the occasion of its Forum on migration.
These projections "to 2035" are not entirely the product of the imagination: the scenarios presented are "plausible and disruptive enough to deserve the attention and preparation of political decision-makers", according to the report.
For example, the analysis of personal data could make it possible "to exploit technological advances to select migrants on the basis of fair and detailed estimates of their integration potential".
After all, Britain is already relying, for security reasons, on big data in the visa process, while the United States can ask immigrants for access to their information on the networks. social.
The generalization of the process could certainly pose ethical problems, but also "lead to more successful integration processes and greater acceptance of the population for migration", estimates the OECD.
- "Weak signals" -
"We have thought about scenarios that could happen, for which we have only weak signals but which could have absolutely gigantic impacts", summarizes for AFP Jean-Christophe Dumont, head of international migration at the OECD.
"Imagine that we can predict behavior based on personal data. That we select based on the probability that someone will fall ill, commit a crime, integrate more or less easily, learn the language ... So not according to what we are, but what we could do tomorrow, according to algorithms. That would give very different migration policies and we are not very far from that, "he continues.
Another hypothesis raised by the OECD: no more migrant could live in hiding, because governments could geolocate them to "anticipate migratory movements".
"We are not far from that in China with facial recognition, with control of social networks. But if we do that, then what does illegal immigration mean? Are we comfortable with this future-there? "asked Mr. Dumont.
"Being able to anticipate movements is a good thing," said Nina Gregori, director of the European Asylum Support Office (EASO), to the OECD.
If it does not rule out the risk of deportations to the border, "the identification of everyone on our territory" could have a "positive impact" for foreigners in an irregular situation, likely to be regularized because "there is entire economies, like agriculture, which are semi-dependent on the labor force of undocumented migrants. "
- Oil shock -
"The more we move towards control systems, the more we need checks and balances," warns the director of the Forum Refugees association, Jean-François Ploquin.
"All this poses the enormous problem of the reliability of the data. It is not because a young African has declared himself an adult in Italy to enter Europe that he is not a minor in reality. is not because we have a data listed that it is true ", he denounces.
The OECD recommends that governments not "exclusively" base their policies on algorithms and artificial intelligence.
The organization sees other possible factors of mass migration such as a successful transition to a carbon-free ecology that would lead to a drop in oil prices.
The black gold exporting countries, particularly in the Middle East, which rely largely on an immigrant workforce, would see not only a return of these migrants to their country of origin but also a potential exodus of their population, warns the OECD.
Which concludes: the mixture of several factors could generate "a perfect storm of imbalances in international migration".
© 2020 AFP