E.g., 06/29/2020
E.g., 06/29/2020

Kathleen Newland

Experts & Staff

Kathleen Newland

Senior Fellow

Contact via email

Kathleen Newland is a Senior Fellow and Co-Founder of the Migration Policy Institute. Her work focuses on the governance of international migration, the relationship between migration and development, and refugee protection.

Media Requests
Michelle Mittelstadt
+1 202-266-1910
+44 20 8123 6265
MMittelstadt@MigrationPolicy.Org

General Inquiries
+1 202-266-1941

Prior to MPI’s establishment in July 2001, Ms. Newland co-directed the International Migration Policy Program at the Carnegie Endowment. Earlier, she was a Lecturer in international political economy at the London School of Economics (1988–92) and Special Assistant to the Rector of the United Nations University (1982–87). She has worked as a consultant to the International Labor Organization, the International Organization for Migration, the Office of the Secretary General of the United Nations, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and the World Bank.

Ms. Newland is a Member of the Board of Directors of Kids in Need of Defense (KIND), a nonprofit organization that provides pro bono legal services to unaccompanied children caught up in the U.S. immigration system. She has served on the Boards of Directors of the International Rescue Committee, the Stimson Center, USA for UNHCR, and the Foundation for the Hague Process on Migrants and Refugees. She is also a Chair Emerita of the Women’s Refugee Commission.

Ms. Newland is author or editor of nine books, including most recently All at Sea: The Policy Challenges of Rescue, Interception, and Long-Term Response to Maritime Migration (MPI, 2016). She has also written more than 50 policy papers, articles, and book chapters.

Ms. Newland is a graduate of Harvard University and the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. She did additional graduate work at the London School of Economics.

Read the Washington Post profile of Kathleen Newland. Read Ms. Newland's report, Circular Migration and Human Development

Bio Page Tabs

Over the past decade, migration has emerged as one of the most pressing issues facing governments around the world. Nearing the end of his tenure as Director General of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), Ambassador William Lacy Swing sat down with MPI Senior Fellow Kathleen Newland to reflect on his ten years leading IOM, as well as the international community's role on migration going forward.

Governments on the receiving end of migrants and refugees reinforced their commitment to returns in 2017, sending or coercing migrants to move back to impoverished or violent homelands. The Dominican Republic pushed out some 70,000 Haitians and native born of Haitian descent, while more than 500,000 Afghans left Iran and Pakistan. Though many of these migrants chose to return, in practice the line between forced and voluntary returns is blurry.

With global displacement at a post-World War II high, the international community made some advances on refugee protection in 2016, but there were also steps backward. The United Nations held the first-ever refugee summit and some countries, including the United States and Canada, increased their resettlement commitments. Meanwhile, conflict intensified in some hotspots and publics turned against refugees, as this Top 10 article explores. 

The recent special session of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly, labeled the High-Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development (HLD), was the UN's second-ever discussion devoted solely to international migration. This article examines the implications and outcomes of the HLD, identifies some of the issues that garnered widespread support, and assesses whether the international community is inching toward greater multilateral engagement on migration.
Diaspora entrepreneurs have several advantages over other entrepreneurs or investors because they have social, political, and economic connections in two or more countries. Kathleen Newland and Hiroyuki Tanaka discuss the conditions and commitments on the part of countries of origin that can help attract and support diaspora entrepreneurs.

A number of governments and institutions are determined to ride international migration toward a future of greater prosperity. MPI's Kathleen Newland outlines what they all should know about the pluses and minuses of the most basic issues that frame the debate on migration and development: remittances and the brain drain.

The October 2005 GCIM report drew attention to problems in migration policymaking and stressed the importance of international cooperation. MPI's Kathleen Newland analyzes its findings and outlines what may happen next.

MPI Director Kathleen Newland provides an overview of the latest asylum numbers and insights as to why they are declining.

MPI Co-Director Kathleen Newland provides a concise overview of the impact of rich country migration policies on poor country development.

Danger often awaits people who set out by boat, seeking safety from upheaval or persecution. MPI Co-Director Kathleen Newland examines how governments, the shipping industry, and international bodies have succeeded — or too frequently, failed — to cast a line to those in need.

Change is sweeping the systems that govern refugee resettlement. MPI Co-Director Kathleen Newland examines the most important trends and their implications.

Commentaries
September 2017
By Kathleen Newland and Randy Capps
Commentaries
January 2017
By Kathleen Newland and T. Alexander Aleinikoff
Commentaries
October 2015
By Kathleen Newland
Commentaries
December 2014
By Kathleen Newland
Video, Audio
May 20, 2014

A discussion with findings from an ORSAM report that evaluates the effect of the Syrian refugee crisis on Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, and Iraq, as well as on the more than 3 million Syrians who have fled their homeland to become refugees in neighboring countries.

Audio
April 30, 2014
A discussion focused the 2014 Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD): its agenda, the policy areas that seem ripe for action, and what impact the discussions will have on the post-2015 development agenda.
Video, Audio
March 12, 2014

This event with UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres features findings from UNHCR’s report, Children on the Run, which examines the increasing numbers of children from Central America and Mexico who head off alone to find refuge in the United States, fleeing violence, insecurity, and abuse.

Video, Audio
February 27, 2014
This panel discussion on unaccompanied minors focuses on a report by Kids in Need of Defense and the Center for Gender & Refugee Studies at UC Hastings College of the Law, whose primary conclusion is that children face a U.S. immigration system created for adults that is not required to consider the child’s best interests.
Video, Audio
November 22, 2013
UN Deputy High Commissioner for Refugees T. Alexander Aleinikoff joined Kathleen Newland for a discussion on the Syrian refugee and internally displaced population, now considered one of the biggest humanitarian emergencies in a generation.

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Recent Activity

Video, Audio, Webinars
July 22, 2015

This webinar examines innovative ideas to adapt the global protection system to better meet the growing challenges of forced migration and to empower refugees through development-led responses to displacement.

Policy Briefs
July 2015

Irregular maritime migration across the Bay of Bengal to Southeast Asia entered a period of crisis in spring 2015 as a wave of migrants and refugees crossed, most departing from ports in Myanmar and Bangladesh, with many facing critical danger along the way. This MPI-IOM Issue in Brief puts the crisis into context and offers a consideration of what recent history has to teach about responses to maritime migration crises.

Video, Audio
June 26, 2015
A discussion of the findings of a new MPI report examining refugee characteristics at arrival for the ten largest national-origin groups resettled between 2002-2013, as well as their integration outcomes with respect to employment and incomes, English proficiency and education levels, and public benefit use.
Reports
June 2015

Using previously non-public refugee admissions data from the State Department, this analysis finds that even as refugees come to the United States from increasingly diverse origins and linguistic backgrounds, some arriving with very low native-language literacy and education, most integrate successfully over time. The report examines refugees' employment, English proficiency, educational attainment, income and poverty status, and public benefits usage.

Reports
May 2015
Today's refugee protection regime, established in the aftermath of World War II, is ill-equipped to meet the protection needs of contemporary displacement situations. This report explores the main sources of strain on the existing system of protection, and examines the two most promising avenues for strengthening the system: development- and mobility-focused approaches.
Video, Audio
May 4, 2015

A discussion on the situation of Syrian refugees, recent developments in the region, and the U.S. humanitarian response, along with reports from recent fact-finding missions to the region by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and Refugee Council USA. Speakers from both organizations, as well as a leading official in the State Department's Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration, discuss conditions for refugees in camps and urban settings, as well as U.S. policy regarding the Syrian crisis. 

Audio
December 16, 2014
This Bangkok launch of the MPI-IOM Issue in Brief "A ‘Freer’ Flow of Skilled Labour within ASEAN: Aspirations, Opportunities and Challenges in 2015 and Beyond" explored the creation of the ASEAN Economic Community and its vision of a freer flow of skilled labor, as well as other migration issues affecting the region.
Commentaries
December 2014
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.

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