No formal, multilateral institutional framework governs the global flow of migrants. National immigration systems — overlaid by a thin layer of international consultation, mostly at the regional level — have fallen short in managing effectively the more “transnational” challenges that migration flows engender, especially illegal migration and the organized crime and smuggling networks that both support it and draw enormous profits from it. Yet no consensus on how to fix or improve the status quo has emerged. Improved international cooperation, rather than greater international regulation, may be the more reasonable objective. Yet there has been no definitive analysis of what specifically greater cooperation should aim to accomplish or the practical forms it should take. The sixth plenary meeting of the Transatlantic Council on Migration considered how to improve the governance of migration, closely scrutinizing the evidence on the ground and proposing a way forward with practical, gradualist, and organic steps to achieve more effective, multilayered cooperation. Read the Council Statement issued following the meeting.
Improving the Governance of International Migration
Contemporary states are ambivalent about the global governance of migration: They desire more of it because they know they cannot reach their goals by acting alone, but they fear the necessary compromise on terms they may not be able to control and regarding an issue that is politically charged. Currently, there is no formal, coherent, multilateral institutional framework governing the global flow of migrants. While most actors agree that greater international cooperation on migration is needed, there has been no persuasive analysis of what form this would take or of what greater global cooperation would aim to achieve. The purpose of this book, the Transatlantic Council on Migration's fifth volume, is to fill this analytical gap by focusing on a set of fundamental questions: What are the key steps to building a better, more cooperative system of governance? What are the goals that can be achieved through greater international cooperation? And, most fundamentally, who (or what) is to be governed?
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Transatlantic Council Statement: The Governance of International Migration: Defining the Potential for Reform in the Next Decade
This Council Statement provides an overview of the Council’s discussions on how states can work together to move beyond the mantra of “global governance,” and begin taking concrete actions in pursuit of a shared agenda of safe, secure, legal, and orderly migration.