E.g., 01/17/2022
E.g., 01/17/2022

Migration Information Source

Mother and daughter from Middle Eastern background
iStock/Phynart Studio

Migration from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region to the United States doubled between 2000 and 2019, yet these immigrants represented less than 3 percent of the overall U.S. foreign-born population as of 2019. MENA immigrants are more likely than other immigrants to be English proficient, have a college degree, and work in management, business, science, and arts occupations.

A Dutch family at Ellis Island between 1915 and 1920.
Library of Congress

As host to more immigrants than any other country, the United States has been shaped and reshaped by immigration over the centuries, with the issue at times becoming a flashpoint. This article covers the history of U.S. immigration and the major laws governing immigration, and provides a comprehensive overview of the present-day immigrant population.

Articles
Family members take a selfie at an airport in Greece.
IOM/Konstantina Mintzoli

The slow and uneven recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic prompted new patterns of movement in parts of the world in 2021. New conflicts also erupted, ongoing crises smoldered, and migrants were often stuck in the middle. Our annual Migration Information Source Top 10 countdown reviews what we consider to be the year's most important migration trends and events.

Migrants enrolled in the Migrant Protection Protocols are processed by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers.
Glenn Fawcett/U.S. Customs and Border Protection

The Biden administration's court-ordered restart of the controversial Migrant Protection Protocols, known informally as the Remain in Mexico policy, puts it in the awkward position of reviving a program it is simultaneously still trying to end. The Trump-era program forced tens of thousands of migrants to wait out the duration of their U.S. immigration court hearings in Mexico and was only questionably successful at deterring unauthorized arrivals.

Two boys pose in an informal settlement east of Johannesburg largely populated by immigrants.
John Hogg/World Bank

South Africa hosts the most immigrants of any African country. Yet it faces conflicting pressures, including the legacy of apartheid, a steady outflow of well-educated South Africans, and the need to juggle bilateral labor mobility schemes at a time of economic insecurity and high unemployment. This article traces these pressures and how they have developed over time.

New U.S. citizens take an oath during a naturalization ceremony.
U.S. National Archives

More than half of all immigrants in the United States are naturalized citizens. The number of new naturalizations has fluctuated from year to year, hitting a decade-long low in fiscal year 2020, in part due to the COVID-19 pandemic and rising processing times. This article provides information on naturalized citizens in the United States, including historical trends and socioeconomic characteristics.

Recent Articles

Source SenegalHTAs

For generations, migrants have emigrated from Senegal, particularly from in and around the Senegal River Valley. With France a key destination, French policy changes have had significant impact on Senegalese migrants and the hometown associations through which they support development in Senegal. This article explores how these policy shifts influence development and quality of life in the Senegal River Valley.

PolicyBeat Flores 2018

As the Trump administration moves to be able to indefinitely detain parents and children intercepted at the U.S.-Mexico border, whether illegal border crossers or asylum seekers, recent apprehension trends and history suggest hardline policies might not be a slam-dunk deterrent with a Central American population often driven by the desire to escape gang or other violence, as this Policy Beat explores.

us peace corps indonesia

Indonesia, which has a long history as a major origin for migrant labor in the Asia-Pacific and beyond, more recently has reluctantly found itself a transit and destination country, including for asylum seekers. Still, policymakers remain focused on protection of its nationals abroad rather than on assuring the status of Chinese and other foreigners in the country. This country profile explores Indonesia's rich migration history. 

 

VietnameseBusiness

The Vietnamese immigrant population in the United States has grown significantly since the end of the Vietnam War, making it the sixth-largest foreign-born population in the country. The main modes of arrival for the Vietnamese have shifted over the years, from refugee protection to family reunification. This article explores the characteristics of Vietnamese immigrants, including their incomes, education, English proficiency, and more.

Source Hendow Crisis

Migrants displaced by crisis do not benefit from international protection the way that refugees do. This article examines the experiences of labor migrants amid manmade and natural disasters in the Central African Republic, Côte d’Ivoire, Lebanon, Libya, South Africa, and Thailand, as well as stakeholder responses. Research demonstrates the agency and resilience of migrants, who develop flexible solutions in the face of crisis.

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The Tuareg, a nomadic group of Berber origin located in several countries across North and West Africa, have been enmeshed in a complicated struggle against the Malian state since January 2012. This article explores the unique role that migration plays in shaping Tuareg grievances in the context of this crisis.

americans overseas 324
The immigration debate in the United States often focuses on how many foreign born enter and reside in the country. Much less attention is paid to Americans who live abroad—a population estimated at anywhere from 2 million to 7 million. This article examines the challenges of enumerating this population and also explores top destinations for American expats, their livelihoods, and motivations for leaving the United States.

Muslim integration is one of the most contentious issues in the immigration debate in Europe, and one that gets to the heart of public anxieties about immigration. This article explores public perception toward Muslims in Western Europe and the array of integration policies that countries in the region have adopted during the past several years.

This article provides a comparative analysis of health outcomes of Mexican immigrant women in the United States, assessing the results against what is known as the immigrant paradox—the idea that these women enjoy a better state of health overall than might be expected, given their socioeconomic status and very limited health insurance coverage.

beyond remittances 324

El Salvador's lengthy civil war crushed diasporas' opportunities for political or civic engagement in this small, densely-populated Central American nation. However, hometown associations—diaspora organizations that contribute to the development needs of their members' hometowns—represent a modern-day venue for civil society participation. This article explores how diasporas are contributing to development in more ways than just cash flows and projects by transforming the governance landscape.

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In 2006, the U.S. admitted more than 41,000 refugees for resettlement and granted asylum to more than 26,000 people. MPI's Kelly O'Donnell and Jeanne Batalova take a detailed look at refugee and asylum statistics in the United States.

spot nov07 300

Nearly 1.3 million individuals became lawful permanent residents of the United States in 2006. MPI's Gretchen Reinemeyer and Jeanne Batalova look at the latest statistics on legal immigration.

Of the 15.36 million union members in 2006, 12 percent were foreign born. MPI's Chuncui Velma Fan and Jeanne Batalova examine the data on immigrants and labor unions from 1996 to 2006.

Over half of the foreign born in the United States in 2005 arrived in 1990 or later. MPI's Jeanne Batalova and Aaron Terrazas look at the countries of origin, education levels, occupations, and other characteristics of newer immigrants.

In 2005, U.S. immigration officials detained nearly a quarter of a million individuals. MPI's Dawn Konet and Jeanne Batalova look at the most recent data on apprehensions, detentions, and removals.

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MPI's Julia Gelatt reports on House passage of strict immigration enforcement bills, USCIS progress on meeting backlog reduction goals, Boeing's border-security contract, and the smaller-than-anticipated immigration marches held in early September.

MPI's Julia Gelatt reports on Congressional action on immigration reform, the costs of the Senate-passed reform bill, new Census data on the U.S. foreign-born population, proposals for greater scrutiny of immigration judges' performance, changes in immigration policy for Cubans, and more.

MPI's Julia Gelatt reports on Congressional field hearings on immigration reform, the latest proposal for immigration reform, new regulations guiding implementation of Medicaid's new proof-of-citizenship requirements, Senate passage of a DHS appropriations bill for 2007, and the extension of the Voting Rights Act.

MPI's Julia Gelatt and Malia Politzer report on the delay of Congressional negotiations on immigration, the DHS appropriations bill, new regulations for following up on mismatched Social Security numbers, and other policy news.

MPI's Julia Gelatt reports on the Senate's passage of historic immigration legislation; President Bush's plan for deploying the National Guard at the border; and the waiver of the material support bar for refugees from Burma, plus other immigration news.

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