South America has been experiencing significant changes in migration flows within the last decade, with more movement within the region, chiefly for labor reasons, and a decline in emigration beyond the region as a result of improving South American economies and reduced prospects elsewhere. Argentina, Brazil, and Chile have attracted the most significant regional migration, with Brazil the preferred destination for migration from outside the continent. Migration beyond South America is chiefly to the United States and Europe. The articles offered here sketch the dynamism of South America's migration trends and policies.
Immigrants from South America made up 2.7 million (about 7 percent) of the United States' foreign-born population of 40.4 million in 2011. While the share may seem small, this population has grown 30 times its size since 1960, when about 90,000 South American immigrants resided in the country. This article examines the latest data on South American immigrants in the United States, including population size, geographic distribution, admission categories, and demographic and socioeconomic characteristics.
Unaccustomed to a large number of migrants, Chile has seen an increase in migrants in the past three decades. Cristián Doña-Reveco and Amanda Levinson examine how the country, still wedded to its dictator-era migration framework, is balancing shifting migration patterns with a piecemeal approach to migration policy.
Migration from Latin America to the United States and Europe appears to have slowed in the wake of the recent global financial crisis. As Jacqueline Mazza and Eleanor Sohnen of the Inter-American Development Bank report, flows between Latin American countries expanded in the 1990s and are still growing, crisis or not, and some countries are taking a more regional approach to managing migration.
Although most Latin Americans head to North America, the increasing flow of people from Latin America to Southern Europe reflects colonial and historical patterns as well as new economic opportunities. Beatriz Padilla and João Peixoto examine various data that show the region's popularity.
Thousands of Ecuadorians live in the United States and Spain, making migration-related development policy a major issue for the government. At the same time, the country has received economic migrants from Peru but has done little to address the Colombian refugee situation, as Brad Jokisch of Ohio University explains.
The majority of South American born counted in the 2000 census were from Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru. MPI's David Dixon and Julia Gelatt look at the social and economic profiles of the foreign born from this region.
Colombia's ongoing armed conflict has caused millions to leave the country, both as economic migrants and as refugees; millions more have been internally displaced. While the government struggles with these issues, it is also courting Colombians abroad. Myriam Bérubé reports.
South America's largest country has experienced waves of immigration and, more recently, emigration. But Brazil has not proactively addressed new migration patterns, including increases in illegal immigrants. Ernesto Friedrich Amaral of the University of Texas at Austin and Wilson Fusco of Universidade Estadual de Campinas report.