The number of people around the world forcibly displaced by conflict or persecution reached its highest total since World War II, with more than 51.2 million fleeing their country or displaced within it, the UN refugee agency reported in 2014. An estimated 13.6 million people have been displaced by conflicts in Syria and Iraq alone, constituting what the UN High Commissioner for Refugees dubbed a mega-crisis.
Fears regarding the spread of the deadly Ebola virus following an outbreak in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone prompted governments around the world to regulate travel from and within West Africa. Travel bans, airport health screenings, closed borders, and traveler quarantines were among the policies implemented. International organizations argue such restrictions drive possibly symptomatic travelers to illegally bypass borders and encourage dishonesty in the exit screening process.
Increasing numbers of Westerners heading to Syria and Iraq to join jihadist organizations like ISIS have governments concerned about possible attacks at home by returning fighters. Several thousand fighters from Europe and other Western countries are believed among the foreign nationals involved in conflicts in Syria and Iraq. Lawmakers scrambled in 2014 to respond with new policies, including seizing passports, stripping citizenship, and criminalizing travel to "no go" zones.
2014 marked the quiet demise worldwide of the traditional points system for selecting skilled immigrants. Canada, which in 1969 invented the points system, in 2015 will join other countries in adopting a hybrid system that places more emphasis on a demand-driven system. This article examines how following the economic crisis, governments have revamped, hybridized, or ended such programs.
Recent surges in the arrival of unauthorized migrants with possible humanitarian claims have prompted the United States and the European Union to consider in-country and offshore processing for some refugee and asylum applications. As this article explores, some of the questions raised about the feasibility of such programs include their consistency with humanitarian law and their effectiveness in reducing unwanted entries.
While a number of major migrant-sending countries like Morocco and Turkey have started to take an active role in the integration of their migrants abroad, the role of subnational authorities has been overshadowed by diaspora engagement initiatives at the national level. This report investigates how the activities of origin countries' regional and local institutions may improve the lives of emigrants to Member States of the European Union.
While there is growing consensus on the value of immigrant integration support prior to departure, such initiatives generally have not fully realized their potential. This policy brief reviews promising examples of predeparture measures for labor market integration in Europe that are jointly designed and/or run by origin- and destination-country actors, illustrating their potential to help effectively address some of the most stubborn obstacles to successful integration.
Youth of a migrant background are over-represented among those who leave school early in the European Union. This policy brief discusses empirical findings, theoretical insights, and promising measures that may inform further policy action to address the disproportionately high level of early school leaving among students with a migrant background, which results from socioeconomic and other factors.
A number of actors outside the formal educational context, including parents, peers, and other community members, can play an important role in the social and educational development of migrant children. This policy brief reviews current measures to promote the integration of migrant students around Europe, focusing on those initiatives that include the family and community as part of the educational process.
Employment-oriented mentoring is increasingly recognized in Europe as a tool for advancing the labor market integration of disadvantaged individuals, including immigrants. This report highlights a number of relevant one-on-one mentoring practices in Europe and North America, focusing on the role of different initiators and stakeholders, forms of collaboration, methods, and target groups.
Driven by rising migrant deaths in the Mediterranean, the Bay of Bengal, the Red Sea, and elsewhere, as well as by the challenges to border-control policies implicit in maritime migration, representatives of states, civil society, and international organizations gathered in December 2014 under the auspices of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees to discuss ways to limit the loss of life and foster international cooperation. This commentary explores the issues and challenges surrounding irregular maritime migration.
A day-long conference in Brussels, co-sponsored by the International Labour Office and the European Commision’s Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs, and Inclusion, where panelists discuss the dynamics by which migrants get stuck in low-skilled work, and the role of training and employment services in helping them progress in their occupations. The conference concludes a project and series of reports prepared on the Labor Market Integration of New Arrivals in Europe.
This report is the final one in an MPI-International Labour Office series that examines the employment prospects of migrants in the EU (focusing on the case-study countries of the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom), as well as the effectiveness of integration and workforce development policies in helping these workers overcome barriers and ascend out of low-skilled work.