The Migration Policy Institute is an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit think tank in Washington, DC dedicated to analysis of the movement of people worldwide.
MPI provides analysis, development, and evaluation of migration and refugee policies at the local, national, and international levels. It aims to meet the rising demand for pragmatic and thoughtful responses to the challenges and opportunities that large-scale migration, whether voluntary or forced, presents to communities and institutions in an increasingly integrated world.
MPI is guided by the philosophy that international migration needs active and intelligent management. When such policies are in place and are responsibly administered, they bring benefits to immigrants and their families, communities of origin and destination, and sending and receiving countries.
MPI’s policy research and analysis proceed from four central propositions:
MPI publishes the online journal The Migration Information Source, a resource providing current and accurate migration and refugee data and analysis. The Source, guided by a panel of distinguished contributing editors, offers a country profiles, stories by leading migration thinkers, policy updates from Capitol Hill, and dispatches from foreign correspondents around the globe. The Source is an ideal tool for policymakers, journalists, researchers, and NGOs looking for accurate information on international migration. Visit the Source at www.migrationinformation.org.
For the most recent annual report issued by MPI, click here
MPI's work is organized around four research pillars:
The international migration system now includes almost every country in the world. Many of them are relatively new to large-scale migration and have not developed the institutions, laws, and policies needed to manage migration flows optimally. Economic, humanitarian, social, and political priorities often dictate contradictory policy directions or conflict with international obligations. The Migration Policy Institute uses the extensive expertise of its directors and staff to assist governments and civil society organizations to develop solutions to these migration problems. MPI's work addresses the following questions:
The parameters of refugee protection have changed dramatically in the last two decades, leaving an international regime in considerable disarray as the new century begins. States increasingly are reluctant to offer the traditional, asylum-based protections to people threatened by armed conflicts or systematic persecution. Alternative methods of protection-such as safe havens, in-country monitoring, and temporary admissions-have been tried and mostly found inadequate, or even disastrous. At the same time, the mingling of refugee and unauthorized immigrant streams has spurred states to institute tough new entry-control measures that have made it difficult for refugees to gain access to safe territory.
MPI is employing a combination of legal and social science research to track new developments in thinking, law, and practice in the realm of refugee protection. The institute works with civil society organizations, NGOs, international organizations, and policymakers to devise workable alternatives that relieve tensions between the needs of refugees and sovereign states.
MPI is working closely with the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), other international organizations, governments, and NGOs to clarify some of the interpretive issues that are making consistent application of refugee law difficult. These questions include:
The Migration Policy Institute provides a location and an intellectual framework for discussion of concrete steps toward the cooperative management of migration and common borders in North America. MPI's work starts with the assumption that borders are integrated social and economic zones that should be viewed as resources rather than barriers. The institute is initially focusing on bilateral (U.S.-Mexico or U.S.-Canada) discussions among public and private sector representatives. Over time, these discussions will become trilateral, and eventually expand to include Central America and possibly the Caribbean. The issues on the policy agenda include:
Few countries make systematic efforts to integrate immigrants and refugees into their social and political fabric and fewer still can claim success. When such failure coexists with incomplete economic incorporation, immigrants and refugees are marginalized. When marginalization becomes entrenched, it leads the host community to view immigrants as net "consumers" of public assets, rather than contributors to and creators of new assets, and as social and political liabilities, rather than as potential resources. The goals of this research pillar are to better understand the process of incorporation and devise ways to effectively address this civic engagement challenge. Integration is a two-way process in which both the newcomers and the host societies are changed. Therefore, MPI's examination of immigrant settlement and integration focuses on the interactive effects of international migration on receiving communities and immigrants themselves. The institute's research focuses on the following three areas: labor market access, social mobility, and civic participation and social cohesion. The institute works in close collaboration with researchers, advocates, and current and former government officials to identify, develop, test, and evaluate local experiments in meaningful integration and civic engagement ideas:
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