E.g., 06/29/2024
E.g., 06/29/2024
Immigration Policy & Law

Immigration Policy & Law

Immigration legislative and administrative policies, legal statutes and court decisions, and regulations collectively shape nations' immigration systems—from visa allotments and immigrant-selection mechanisms to immigrant integration programs, border controls, and more. As international migration has increased in size and spread and as a number of nations are more flexibly adjusting their immigration systems, the research offered here examines the many permutations of immigration policy and law, often with a comparative lens.

Recent Activity

A naturalization ceremony at the White House.
Cover image for Lessons from COVID-19
Policy Briefs
March 2024
By  Meghan Benton and Lawrence Huang
Cover image for Converging Crises
Reports
March 2024
By  Luisa Feline Freier, Andrea Kvietok and Leon Lucar Oba
A member of the Texas National Guard faces migrants in Eagle Pass, Texas.
Articles
Cover image for A New Way Forward for Employment-Based Immigration
Policy Briefs
February 2024
By  Julia Gelatt and Muzaffar Chishti

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Cover image for Migration and Displacement in Secondary Cities
Reports
November 2023
By  Samuel Davidoff-Gore and Camille Le Coz
Cover image for Immigration and Integration in the Ever More Diverse Houston Area
Reports
November 2023
By  Valerie Lacarte, Michael Fix and Jeanne Batalova
Cover image for Why Matching Matters
Policy Briefs
October 2023
By  Craig Damian Smith and Emma Ugolini
Cover image for Recent Immigrant Children
Fact Sheets
October 2023
By  Julie Sugarman
Cover image for A Winding Path to Integration...
Reports
October 2023
By  Diego Chaves-González and Natalia Delgado
Cover image for Leveraging Data...
Policy Briefs
October 2023
By  Jacob Hofstetter and Margie McHugh

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A member of the Texas National Guard faces migrants in Eagle Pass, Texas.

Rising tensions between Texas and the federal government have sparked fears of a constitutional crisis after the state deployed its National Guard to prevent the U.S. Border Patrol from conducting operations in a city park in Eagle Pass, with Texas Governor Greg Abbott saying the “invasion” of migrants triggered the need for action. This article provides an overview of the standoff and the larger context of current and past state-federal tensions over immigration enforcement.

A family of Afghan evacuees leaving Fort McCoy, Wisconsin.

The Afghan immigrant population in the United States has grown dramatically since 2010, and particularly since the 2021 withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan. Most Afghans who obtained a green card in recent years have done so through the Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program, reserved for interpreters and other Afghans who worked with the U.S. government. This article offers data on the approximately 195,000 Afghan immigrants in the United States.

A health worker from the Philippines.

Countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, and Germany are increasingly relying on immigrant health-care workers to fill gaps in their workforce and care for aging populations. That has created opportunities for many foreign-born doctors and nurses, but could harm their origin countries. This article examines the dynamics of global health-care worker migration, particularly in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

President Joe Biden signs an executive order.

In three years, President Joe Biden has surpassed the number of immigration-focused executive actions taken by the Trump administration throughout its entire four-year term, making his the most active U.S. presidency ever on immigration. Yet the Biden administration has been repeatedly accused of inaction at the U.S.-Mexico border, where record levels of migrant encounters have occurred. This article reviews the Biden track record on immigration.

A celebration for the Feast of San Gennaro in New York's Little Italy

One-tenth of all immigrants in the United States come from Europe, a vast decline from the mid-20th century, as migration within Europe has grown and more U.S. immigrants arrive from other destinations. This article provides an overview of contemporary European immigration to the United States, as a region and by top European countries of origin.

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Photo of woman walking around a school campus.
Commentaries
November 2021
By  Jeanne Batalova and Michael Fix
Photo of Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken meeting with Afghan evacuees in Germany
Commentaries
September 2021
By  Mark Greenberg, Celia Reynolds and Essey Workie
Bhutanese refugee sits on bed in family's apartment in New York
Commentaries
June 2021
By  Essey Workie, Mark Greenberg and Lillie Hinkle
IOm_Colombia_Passport_Woman_smaller
Commentaries
March 2021
By  Natalia Banulescu-Bogdan and Diego Chaves-González

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Expert Q&A, Audio
June 27, 2023

MPI Senior Policy Analyst Valerie Lacarte speaks with experts Bridget Wooding and Louby George about migration of Haitians to the Dominican Republic and the Bahamas.

Central american migrants resting at Casa del Migrante in Tecun Uman, Guatemala.
Video
June 7, 2023

Marking release of a report, experts on this webinar examine migration narratives since 2018 and how they have been used to justify policy approaches or incentivize mobility decisions.

Expert Q&A, Audio
May 23, 2023

MPI's Lawrence Huang discusses COVID-19 mobility restrictions in China and the Asia Pacific—and what this all means for future public health crises—with Dr. Karen Grépin, a health policy professor at the University of Hong Kong.

Image of computer and digital tools
Video
April 27, 2023

Digital solutions have been a lifeline for many governments and stakeholders involved in the reception and integration of millions of displaced Ukrainians. While digitalization holds great potential, digital tools also carry risk. This MPI Europe webinar examines the trade-offs, identifies lessons learned, and explores how digital tools might strengthen migration and integration systems.

Image of doctor explaining a diagnosis to a teen female patient sitting on a hospital bed
Video, Audio
April 24, 2023

Marking the launch of a report by the American Academy of Pediatrics and MPI, this event examines unaccompanied children’s access to medical and mental health services post-release and offering recommendations for improvements.

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Recent Activity

Articles

Immigration touches on many facets of life in the United States. Get the facts with this useful resource, which compiles in one place answers to some of the most often-asked questions about immigration and immigrants in the United States now and historically. This article contains essential data on the immigrant population, immigration levels, trends in immigration enforcement, and much more.

Policy Briefs
March 2024

The COVID-19 pandemic both shocked the global mobility system and reaffirmed the centrality and resiliency of human mobility. Four years on, public and political attention to COVID-19’s unprecedented consequences for cross-border movement has waned. Yet if countries are to manage mobility more effectively in future public-health crises, this is an important moment for reflection and learning, as this issue brief explores.

Reports
March 2024

Some of the strictest COVID-19 pandemic-era limits on human mobility occurred in the Asia Pacific region. Border closures started in East and Southeast Asia in early 2020 and quickly spread through the entire region, in some cases remaining in place for more than two years. This report examines the approaches countries took and reflects on the immense costs and benefits of using border measures to tackle public-health risks.

Reports
March 2024

The COVID-19 pandemic’s impacts on mobility in the Middle East and North Africa were immediate and wide-reaching. These include the world’s largest and most sustained repatriation efforts for stranded migrants, halted and reversed irregular journeys, and a reckoning with some countries’ reliance on foreign labor. This report examines how these impacts varied across countries in this highly diverse region, as well as the uneven recovery.

Reports
March 2024

The COVID-19 pandemic hit South American nations at a time when many were already contending with major migration challenges. Historic levels of intraregional migration and displacement, notably from Venezuela, collided with countries’ attempts to stop the spread of a new threat to public health. This report examines the region’s responses to the public-health crisis, and the immediate and lasting impacts on cross-border movement.

Reports
March 2024

The story of the COVID-19 pandemic in Europe is chiefly one of challenges to solidarity and coordination. Cross-border movement—even within Europe’s Schengen Area—ground to a halt, and countries took varied approaches to using travel measures in an attempt to slow the virus’s spread. This report explores the pandemic’s impacts on mobility to and within Europe, its challenges to European solidarity, and lessons for future public-health crises.

Articles

Rising tensions between Texas and the federal government have sparked fears of a constitutional crisis after the state deployed its National Guard to prevent the U.S. Border Patrol from conducting operations in a city park in Eagle Pass, with Texas Governor Greg Abbott saying the “invasion” of migrants triggered the need for action. This article provides an overview of the standoff and the larger context of current and past state-federal tensions over immigration enforcement.

Policy Briefs
February 2024

U.S. employment-based visa policies, last updated in 1990, are not aligned with the country’s current and future labor market needs. This policy brief outlines MPI’s proposal for a new visa pathway that could help the United States better leverage immigration to meet its labor market needs, boost protections for both U.S.- and foreign-born workers, and flexibly adapt to future economic and demographic changes.

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