2024: Crisis Management Days Book of Abstracts
Communication and Technology (Crisis Communication, Application of New Technologies and Artificial Intelligence in Crisis Management)

Cultural and communication differences in the context of illegal migration in Southeastern Europe

Ana Mirenić
University of Applied Sciences Velika Gorica
Tamara Čendo Metzinger
University of Applied Sciences Velika Gorica

Published 2024-05-20


  • migration crisis,
  • cultural differences,
  • communication


The first major migration crisis faced by much of southern and eastern Europe, including Croatia and its neighboring countries, occurred in the second half of 2015. Migrants, mostly from the Middle East, often found their way via the so-called Mediterranean migration routes through Italy, Spain, and Greece, and by land from Turkey across the Balkans toward the wealthier Western Europe.

Various sources offered different information about refugee routes, their behavior, and their lives and survival in refugee camps. People’s knowledge about the refugees from the east, however, is mostly based on their own prejudices. It is on such prejudices that opinions and attitudes about the migrants, who arrive by routes on the edge of possibility, are formed. Driven by wars or the impossibility of securing their own livelihoods, which are often on the constant brink of poverty, migrants have left and are still leaving their homes. Many have lost their lives in the waters of the Mediterranean, all in the hope of reaching a promised land somewhere in the embrace of Western or Northern Europe.

This paper will attempt to address how cultural and communication differences have reflected on their adaptation to the people and countries they arrived in, and how significant the cultural, and indeed any other difference, is between, conditionally speaking, them and us.