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Migration Policy Institute Podcasts

MPI is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank dedicated to the study of the movement of people worldwide.

No End in Sight: The Worsening Syrian Refugee Crisis

Posted in Refugees, IDPs, and Humanitarian Response, International Migration by migrationpolicy on May 4th, 2015

To date, almost 4 million refugees have fled the Syrian civil war, the vast majority seeking shelter in Jordan, Turkey, and Lebanon, but with growing numbers also moving to Egypt and Northern Iraq. At this Migration Policy Institute briefing, Erol Kekic from Refugee Council USA and Anastasia Brown from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, who recently visited the region, report on their findings on the space for humanitarian protection. Also joining the panel is Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Simon Henshaw, whose portfolio in the Department’s Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration includes Syrian refugees. He discusses recent developments in the region and in the U.S. humanitarian response. The discussion is moderated by Kathleen Newland, director of MPI's Refugee Protection and Humanitarian Response Program. 

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The Asia-Pacific and Women’s Labour Migration

Posted in Migration and Development, Labor Migration, International Migration by migrationpolicy on March 27th, 2015

At this briefing, hosted by the International Organization for Migration and the Migration Policy Institute, speakers discuss the critical issues surrounding women's labour migration in the Asia-Pacific region and the related opportunities and challenges. The event marks the launch of the IOM-MPI Issue in Brief, Women’s Labour Migration from Asia and the Pacific: Opportunities and Challenges, the twelfth in a joint-publication series offering succinct insights on migration issues affecting the Asia-Pacific region today.

Note: Due to technical errors, the audio does not include opening remarks and starts with the author's presentation. 

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A ‘Freer’ Flow of Skilled Labour within ASEAN: Aspirations, Opportunities, and Challenges in 2015 and Beyond

Posted in Migration and Development, Labor Migration, International Migration by migrationpolicy on December 16th, 2014

In 2007, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) agreed on an ambitious goal to fast-track the creation of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by 2015, which would transform the ASEAN region into a single market and production base. The transformation would be based on five core components, including a free flow of skilled labor. This briefing, held in Bangkok, Thailand and hosted by the International Organization for Migration and the Migration Policy Institute, explores these issues and launches the Issue in Brief, A ‘Freer’ Flow of Skilled Labour within ASEAN: Aspirations, Opportunities and Challenges in 2015 and Beyond, the eleventh in a joint publication series offering succinct insights on migration issues affecting the Asia-Pacific region today. To read the series, visit: www.migrationpolicy.org/regions/asia-and-pacific.

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Where Next? The Future of Integration Policy in Europe

This is the third and final panel from the day-long conference, "Better Work for Immigrants: Tackling Joblessness and Stunted Progression in the European Union," held in Brussels and organized by the Migration Policy Institute (MPI) Europe in collaboration with the International Labour Office (ILO) and the European Commission. The event concludes an MPI-ILO research project, funded by the European Commission, that examines employment prospects of foreign-born workers and the effectiveness of integration and workforce development policies in helping foreign-born workers overcome barriers and move up into middle-skilled positions in six case study countries: the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Read reports from the series here.

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Can Training Get Migrants into Middle-Skilled Jobs? Working More Effectively with Social Partners and Civil Society

This is the second panel from the day-long conference, "Better Work for Immigrants: Tackling Joblessness and Stunted Progression in the European Union," held in Brussels and organized by the Migration Policy Institute (MPI) Europe in collaboration with the International Labour Office (ILO) and the European Commission. The event concludes an MPI-ILO research project, funded by the European Commission, that examines employment prospects of foreign-born workers and the effectiveness of integration and workforce development policies in helping foreign-born workers overcome barriers and move up into middle-skilled positions in six case study countries: the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Read reports from the series here.

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Bleak Picture or Steady Progress? Labour Market Outcomes of New Arrivals in Europe

This panel discussion opens the day-long conference, "Better Work for Immigrants: Tackling Joblessness and Stunted Progression in the European Union," held in Brussels and organized by the Migration Policy Institute (MPI) Europe in collaboration with the International Labour Office (ILO) and the European Commission. The event concludes an MPI-ILO research project, funded by the European Commission, that examines employment prospects of foreign-born workers and the effectiveness of integration and workforce development policies in helping foreign-born workers overcome barriers and move up into middle-skilled positions in six case study countries: the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Read reports from the series here.

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Integrating Migration into the Post-2015 United Nations Development Agenda

Posted in Migration and Development, International Migration by migrationpolicy on September 24th, 2014

This event held in Bangkok, Thailand and co-sponsored by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the Migration Policy Institute (MPI) marks the launch of Integrating Migration into the Post-2015 United Nations Development Agenda, the tenth Issue in Brief in a joint-MPI-IOM publication series offering insight on migration issues affecting the Asia-Pacific region. The discussion covers the role of migration as a driver for development and explores how to integrate migration-related targets and indicators into the post-2015 development agenda.
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Has EU Immigration and Asylum Policy Failed? Can It Ever Succeed?

This Migration Policy Institute Europe (MPI Europe) telebriefing examines the realities of European policy on immigration and asylum thus far, the challenges that policymakers face in the coming months and years, and what possibilities exist for future reform and development of EU immigration policy. Is this the end of the road for European collaboration, or the beginnings of closer cooperation? Participants include MPI Europe Director Elizabeth Collett, MPI Europe Fellow Madeline Garlick, and moderator Matina Stevis of the Wall Street Journal. The discussion outlines the findings of a new MPI Europe policy brief written by Madeline Garlick that reflects on the challenges confronting the European Union and Member States with respect to asylum policymaking in the near term and beyond, as well as some of the opportunities ahead to improve the Common European Asylum System.

To read the policy brief, click here.

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Syrians on the Edge: The Status of Refugees in Neighboring Countries

This MPI panel discussion, in partnership with the Middle East Institute and the Center for Middle Eastern Strategic Studies (ORSAM), examines the status of Syrian refugees abroad and the effect of the ongoing Syrian crisis on Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, and Iraq. Panelists Oytun Orhan, ORSAM Project Coordinator and Researcher, Peri-Khan Aqrawi-Whitcomb, Middle East Research Institute Junior Research Fellow, Faysal Itani, Resident Fellow at the Atlantic Council's Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East, and Saban Kardas, ORSAM President discuss the experiences of each country as outlined in ORSAM’s report. The project team visited each country and after six months of boots-on-the-ground research, found that women and children account for more than 75 percent of the refugees, making education in particular a devastating issue for the next generation of Syrians. In addition, Syrian emigrants settle not only in camps but also in cities, raising prices and lowering wages all along the Syrian borders. The discussion is moderated by Kathleen Newland, Director of the Refugee Protection Program at MPI.

The panel makes the case that because of the heavy financial and social costs, Syrian displacement is not merely a problem for Syria or even the greater Middle East; the destabilization is a global problem requiring significant outreach to the global community.

To read the report from ORSAM, click here: www.orsam.org.tr/en/showReport.aspx?ID=2638
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A Discussion on the Global Forum on Migration and Development: Perspectives from Asia and the Pacific

This International Organization for Migration (IOM) and Migration Policy Institute (MPI) meeting launches the Issue in Brief, The Global Forum on Migration and Development: Perspectives from Asia and the Pacific, the ninth in this MPI/IOM joint-publication series that offer succinct insights on migration issues affecting the Asia-Pacific region today. The discussion explores the Asia-Pacific priorities for the GMFD 2014 and provides recommendations on how the GMFD can be a development focused and results-oriented forum.

Over the last seven years, many governments in the Asia-Pacific region have been actively engaged in the Global Forum on Migration and Development (GFMD) not only as participants to the process but also as leaders driving its direction and continuity. The region’s active engagement has clearly made an impact judging on the themes and topics of the GFMD since 2007. To continue its success and to remain as relevant, the GFMD has to be as instrumental in shaping the reality on the ground as much as the global discourse on migration and development.

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Human Rights, Climate Change, Environmental Degradation and Migration: A New Paradigm

This MPI event, in partnership with the International Organization for Migration (IOM), discusses the critical issue of climate-related displacement in the Asia-Pacific region, explored in depth in the joint MPI and IOM brief Human Rights, Climate Change, Environmental Degradation and Migration: A New Paradigm. Climate change and environmental degradation are predicted to displace millions of people in the coming years, either directly or indirectly. While today’s international legal framework provides a degree of protection to those displaced by environmental factors and climatic events, there is no global consensus on a definition for such a group. In the absence of this, gaps in the legal system, and in implementation, how can recognition of the vulnerability of environmental migrants be facilitated and their protection ensured? This discussion explores how to protect climate change-induced migrants, particularly in the highly vulnerable Asia-Pacific region.

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A Transatlantic Conversation: Managing Migration in the Era of Mobility

This Migration Policy Institute panel discussion, presented in cooperation with the Greek Embassy, explores how the 2014 Greek Presidency of the European Union and the United States can work to address the challenges of managing migration while meeting humanitarian obligations and nurturing economic growth. Speakers are: Ambassador of Greece to the United States Christos P. Panagopoulos; U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees, and Migration Anne Richard; MPI CEO Michael Fix; and moderator Demetrios G. Papademetriou, the President of MPI. 


As the 2014 Greek Presidency of the Council of the European Union works to formulate the European Union’s next five-year program, two interconnected challenges have come to the fore: building a comprehensive migration system whose parts work harmoniously to meet humanitarian obligations and nurture economic growth and social cohesion, and doing so with very limited resources. Europe is not alone in the difficulties it faces in meeting these goals—and in fact shares many of these challenges with the United States. This discussion bridges these critical themes and offer ideas on how to manage more effectively the opportunities and responsibilities migration writ large creates.

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Effective Labour Migration Management Session II: Labour migration policy responsiveness to the business and worker needs

Posted in International Migration, European Migration, Migration Policy Institute Europe by migrationpolicy on December 19th, 2013

This Migration Policy Institute Europe panel discussion, one of two at an event organized with the Bertelsmann Stiftung, entitled “Effective Labour Migration Management: Creating Checks and Balances while Searching for Talent,” assesses the extent to which current labour migration systems are tailored to the needs of businesses and, at the same time, are able to protect and foster the labour and social rights of both migrant and native workers. The session brings the social partners' perspective into the debate and includes a discussion of the regulations of intra-company transfers and of the challenges and opportunities for integrating labour mobility provisions into trade agreements. The session is moderated by MPI Europe Director Elizabeth Collett and features Constantino Fotakis, a former adviser to the European Commission’s DG Employment; Carsten von der Linden of the Boston Consulting Group; Pauline Mathewson of Fragomen Worldwide; and Marco Cilento of the European Trade Union Confederation.

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Effective Labour Migration Management Session I: Integrating labour migration into modern European economies

Posted in International Migration, European Migration, Migration Policy Institute Europe by migrationpolicy on December 18th, 2013

This Migration Policy Institute Europe event, organized with the Bertelsmann Stiftung, entitled “Effective Labour Migration Management: Creating Checks and Balances while Searching for Talent” brought together experts, policymakers, and social partners involved in the management of labor migration to discuss the various options available to policymakers when trying to design an 'optimally balanced' labor migration policy. This panel was the first of two, and focused on key questions such as: how can policymakers strike a balance between integrating migrant workers with the right mix of skills to support economic growth and demographic sustainability, and reduce the cost of immigration for public budgets and the local labour market and society? Can governments minimise the costs of immigration by limiting either access or rights for lower-skilled migrants? And what needs to be done today to forge a fair deal on talent in the medium term? It also served as the Brussels launch of Martin Ruhs’ book, The Price of Rights: Regulating International Labour Migration. The session is moderated by MPI Senior Policy Analyst Madeleine Sumption and features author and Oxford University Lecturer Martin Ruhs, Bertelmann Stiftung’s Christal Morehouse, and Thomas Liebig, of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development.

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Tackling Brain Waste among Immigrant Professionals: Initiatives to Improve the Recognition of Foreign Qualifications

Posted in US Immigration Policy, International Migration, European Migration by migrationpolicy on December 12th, 2013

This Migration Policy Institute panel discussion focuses on the circulation of skilled immigrant professionals and the recognition of foreign qualifications in the United States and Europe. The event brought together experts and policymakers from both sides of the Atlantic to discuss what governments can do to improve the recognition of foreign credentials — particularly in regulated occupations where time-consuming and expensive licensing processes can substantially delay access to skilled employment. The discussion highlights promising practices (including an example from Quebec), and identifies ways US policymakers can learn from European innovations in qualifications recognition and how international cooperation can help — both across the Atlantic and further afield. The event coincided with the release of the final report of a two-year research initiative funded by the Delegation of the European Union to the United States. Read the report: Skilled Immigrants in the Global Economy: Prospects for International Cooperation on Recognition of Foreign Qualifications.

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The Ongoing Challenge of Ensuring Human Rights for Migrants in the European Union and United States

Posted in US Immigration Policy, International Migration, European Migration by migrationpolicy on October 21st, 2013

In this panel discussion at the Migration Policy Institute, Morten Kjaerum, Director of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) and former Founding Director of the Danish Institute for Human Rights, discussed the state of rights protection in Europe as well as his agency’s role in this evolving arena. The FRA’s goal is to promote understanding and secure fundamental rights in the European Union, and the discussion explored the organization’s work collecting and analyzing hard-to-find data, and its strategies for using this to combat discrimination against migrants and other minority populations. Other speakers focused on the evolution of the immigrant-rights movement in the United States, with comments by Lucas Guttentag, Founder and former National Director and Senior Advisor of the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project; Wade Henderson, President of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights; and Becky Monroe, Senior Counsel to the Assistant Attorney General in the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. The speakers discussed shared challenges and opportunities on both sides of the Atlantic, a conversation that was particularly relevant in light of the loss of human life at Lampedusa and the deportation of a teenage Roma girl seeking asylum in France. The panel was moderated by MPI Senior Vice President Michael Fix.

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Newcomers to the Aloha State: A Portrait of Mexicans in Hawaii

Posted in Immigrant Integration, International Migration by migrationpolicy on October 3rd, 2013

The Mexican-origin population in Hawai’i represents a small, but fast-growing group, and one that is little examined. This briefing at the State Capitol in Honolulu, organized in conjunction with the University of Hawaii at Manoa, marked the formal release of a Migration Policy Institute report that presents key demographic and socioeconomic information about the Mexican-origin population in Hawai’i. The briefing to discuss the report, Newcomers to the Aloha State: A Portrait of Mexicans in Hawaii, featured researchers Jeanne Batalova of MPI and the University of Hawaii's Monisha Das Gupta and Sue Haglund. Other speakers included Minister Juan Manuel Calderón Jaimes, Deputy Director General for Consular Affairs at the Mexican Foreign Ministry, and Bruce Coppa, Chief of Staff to Governor Neil Abercrombie. This is the first time that a comprehensive study on the Mexican-origin population in Hawaii has been undertaken, and the speakers discussed the demographic characteristics and experiences of this population, the vast majority of whom are either U.S. born or naturalized citizens, as well as the immigration enforcement and other policies that affect them.

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Sharing Lessons, Sharing Responsibility: Combating Human Trafficking

Migration Policy Institute Human Trafficking Panel

This Migration Policy Institute event discussed the Dutch model for fighting human trafficking and the strategic and operational dilemmas that public prosecutors in the Netherlands face. The event discussion also covered international efforts to engage private-sector organizations and the public in reducing organized crime; ways to strengthen law enforcement’s operational capacity and ability to apply collaborative and interagency approaches; and strategies for framing the public and political discourse on the issue. Demetrios G. Papademetriou, MPI President, moderates a discussion on the international efforts to engage private-sector organizations, law enforcement, governments, and the public in reducing organized crime to combat human trafficking. Panelists include Corinne Dettmeijer-Vermeulen, National Rapporteur for Human Trafficking in The Netherlands; Jane Nady Sigmon, Senior Advisor to the Director of the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, US Department of State; Herman Bolhaar, Chair of the Dutch Public Prosecution Service; Jack Blakey, Chief of the Special Prosecutions Bureau, Cook County, Illinois State Attorney’s Office; and Ruud Bik, Deputy Chief, National Police of the Netherlands.

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Changing Dynamics: Immigration, Mexico, and the United States

Posted in US Immigration Policy, International Migration by migrationpolicy on April 5th, 2013

Mexican Ambassador H.E. Medina MoraThe Migration Policy Institute hosts a discussion with H.E. Eduardo Medina Mora, Mexico’s Ambassador to the United States, on the changing dynamics of Mexico’s economy, demographics, and large-scale emigration, and their implications for both Mexico and the United States. MPI President Demetrios Papademetriou moderates the discussion, joined by Senior Fellow Doris Meissner, who directs MPI’s U.S. immigration policy program.

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Rethinking National Identity in the Age of Migration

Posted in Immigrant Integration, International Migration, European Migration by migrationpolicy on October 24th, 2012

Migration Policy Institute Event with Patrick Simon (left) and Cas Mudde (right)

In this Migration Policy Institute event on October 24, speakers discuss the anti-immigrant political movement in Europe (particularly France and the Netherlands) and the United States, the players who contribute to this environment, an analysis on the current situation in these countries, and the implications for community cohesion and national identity. Speakers: Patrick Simon, Director of Research, Institut national d’études démographiques, and Researcher at the Center for European Studies at Sciences Po, Paris; Cas Mudde, Assistant Professor of International Affairs at the University of Georgia; National Council of La Raza Executive Vice President Charles Kamasaki; and America’s Voice Executive Director Frank Sharry. Moderated by MPI President Demetrios G. Papademetriou.

View Cas Mudde's PowerPoint Presentation |  View Patrick Simon's PowerPoint Presentation

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