Some speculated that increasing unemployment could prompt thousands of immigrants to head home and citizens of hard-hit countries to assault immigrants for taking "their" jobs and causing other problems. However, no country in 2009 has seen a mass exodus of immigrants due to the recession, and immigrants have not been systematically attacked.
As violence flared from Afghanistan to Iraq to Mexico this year, hundreds of thousands fled over land and by boat in search of safety. Asylum seekers' main destinations—Europe, Australia, and Canada—were not new, but the governments in these countries took a harder line in 2009.
Discussions about climate change and migration ramped up in 2009, in large part due to a number of conferences and reports surrounding the highly anticipated United Nations (UN) Climate Change conference in Copenhagen.
The global recession has caused countries that once welcomed foreign workers by the tens and hundreds of thousands — particularly Spain — to rethink generous immigration policies as unemployment rates have risen.
Many countries relied on low-skilled immigrant workers during good times. But Japan, Spain, and the Czech Republic have recently introduced "pay-to-go" programs to reduce the number of unemployed immigrants. MPI's Kristen McCabe, Serena Yi-Ying Lin, and Hiroyuki Tanaka, and Piotr Plewa of the European University Institute examine these programs and the larger policy questions they raise.
For many developing countries, migrants are considered valuable contributors to future development. As proof of their commitment, they have invested in diaspora institutions with responsibilities ranging from protecting migrants to encouraging investment. MPI's Dovelyn Rannveig Agunias analyzes 45 such institutions across 30 countries and breaks them down by type.
MPI's Muzaffar Chishti and Claire Bergeron report on immigrant provisions in current health-care reform legislation, ICE's plans to make detention more "civil," a small drop in the size of the U.S. foreign-born population, and more.
The world's second most populous country also has a vast diapora spread across nearly every continent. Daniel Naujoks provides a broad overview of Indian migration flows and major populations worldwide, and discusses India's diaspora policies, refugees and asylum seekers from the region, and illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.
Intermarriage is considered a test of integration: the higher the rate, the more integrated the group. Olga Nottmeyer of DIW Berlin finds that while immigrants from Turkey, by far Germany's largest immigrant group, have had low rates of intermarriage in the first generation, intermarriage rates among second-generation Turkish men are increasing.
There were nearly 40 million temporary admissions to the United States in 2008, more than twice the number in 1990. MPI's Jeanne Batalova outlines the definition of nonimmigrants and takes a detailed look at admissions data and data limitations.
MPI's Muzaffar Chishti and Claire Bergeron report on Senator Edward Kennedy's contributions to U.S. immigration policy, the end of arrest quotas in ICE's National Fugitive Operations Program, E-Verify for federal contractors, and more.
In recent years, the European Union has come to recognize that it cannot prevent migration and that it needs a different approach to managing flows from its poorer neighbors. Jean-Pierre Cassarino of the European University Institute looks at the rationale for mobility partnerships and what they will need to be effective.
Ireland's economy and openness to labor migration from new EU Member States fueled immigration flows, including return migration, over the past few years. But the global recession has hit the country hard, and unemployment among both foreigners and Irish nationals is rising. Emma Quinn of the Economic and Social Research Institute in Dublin updates the Ireland country profile with a look at recent trends, policies, and data.
Obesity rates among children have risen dramatically in the United States. As analysis of a nationally representative study shows, children of newly arrived immigrants are particularly vulnerable to this growing health problem. Jennifer Van Hook, Kelly S. Balistreri, and Elizabeth Baker report.
Over one million immigrants—one-third from Mexico, India, and the Philippines—became U.S. citizens in 2008. MPI's Jeanne Batalova takes a detailed look at the latest naturalization trends in the United States.
Recent immigration to the United Kingdom is larger and more diverse than at any point in its history. This updated profile examines how the global recession is affecting migration flows, the latest immigration and asylum data, and overviews of new immigration and integration policies.
In 2008, the United States raised the ceiling on refugee admission by 10,000, admitted more than 60,000 refugees for resettlement, and granted asylum to nearly 23,000 people. MPI's Jeanne Batalova takes a detailed look at refugee and asylum statistics in the United States.
International migration from Asia grew dramatically in the 1970s and 1980s. Since the 1990s, migration within Asia has risen. Stephen Castles of the University of Oxford and Mark Miller of the University of Delaware examine regional trends in this article based on their book Age of Migration.