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Associate Policy Analyst
Lawrence Huang is an Associate Policy Analyst with MPI’s International Program. His work focuses on the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on migration and mobility, as well as the migration, environment, and climate change nexus.
Previously, Mr. Huang worked as a consultant at the International Organization for Migration, where he led capacity-building and knowledge management in an 11-country global program on migration and sustainable development. Earlier, he was an Editor at the Oxford Monitor of Forced Migration and co-ran the annual conference of the Oxford Migration Studies Society.
He holds a master’s degree in migration studies from the University of Oxford, funded by the Healy Scholarship at St. Cross College, and a BA in government with honors from Georgetown University.
Many countries are reopening for international travel and migration after the shutdown forced by the pandemic. Yet there is still no consensus on whether and how to use travel measures to prevent the spread of future variants of COVID-19 or respond to the next public health crisis. This commentary lays out four guiding principles for building an inclusive and effective global mobility system.
Despite high hopes that international movement would be revived in 2021 after the deep chill in 2020 with designation of a global pandemic, cross-border mobility remained limited as migrants and travelers faced complex rules, high costs, and uncertainty as new COVID-19 variants emerged. This report assesses global mobility in 2021, including changing use of travel restrictions, their impacts on mobile populations, and efforts to safely restart migration and travel.
Digital health credentials that verify a person’s COVID-19 vaccination, testing, or recovery status are a central part of efforts to restart international travel and migration. This report explores these credentials’ use to date and persistent challenges, including those related to international coordination and technical compatibility between systems. It also recommends strategies to more fully leverage their potential and make them more inclusive.