McKinsey Consultants and Technocratic Fantasies: Crafting the Illusion of Orderly Migration Management in Greece

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


In the aftermath of the 2016 EU-Turkey deal, EU institutions turned to McKinsey, the US consultancy firm, to eliminate the backlog of asylum cases of thousands of illegalized migrants in refugee camps on Greek islands. From identifying “bottlenecks” in the asylum process to “performance targets” for caseworkers, McKinsey was tasked with transforming the entire reception regime. Based on internal documents obtained through freedom of information requests, this chapter asks: What technocratic imaginaries of control are encoded in McKinsey’s vision of more efficient and orderly migration management? Through a granular account of McKinsey’s intervention, it interrogates the data practices that transformed the refugee population into depersonalized objects of bureaucratic knowledge and sustain the violence of the EU hotspot regime.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDoing Digital Migration Studies
Subtitle of host publicationTheories and Practices of the Everyday
EditorsKoen Leurs, Sandra Ponzanesi
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
PublisherAmsterdam University Press
Number of pages20
ISBN (Print)9789463725774, 9789048555758
Publication statusPublished - 20 Feb 2024


  • migration
  • McKinsey
  • management consultancy

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