Migration Policy Institute

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Migration Policy Institute
FoundersKathleen Newland and Demetrios G. Papademetriou
TypeThink tank
HeadquartersWashington, D.C.
Andrew Selee
Director of National Center on Immigrant Integration Policy
Margie McHugh
President of MPI Europe
Parent organization
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace[citation needed]

The Migration Policy Institute (MPI) is a [1][2] nonpartisan, independent think tank established in 2001 by Kathleen Newland and Demetrios G. Papademetriou. It seeks to improve immigration and integration policies through authoritative research and analysis, opportunities for learning and dialogue, and the development of new ideas to address complex policy questions in ways that benefit all elements of society.[3][4][5][6]


The Migration Policy Institute was established in Washington, DC by Demetrios G. Papademetriou and Kathleen Newland in 2001. The Migration Policy Institute launched MPI Europe in 2011 in Brussels.[7] Andrew Selee is the President of MPI.[8] MPI publishes an online journal, the Migration Information Source, which provides information, thoughts, and analyses of international migration and refugee trends.[9] It also hosts the Migration Data Hub, which offers interactive data tools and maps drawing from authoritative governmental and nongovernmental sources around the world.[10] MPI is regularly rated one of the top think tanks in the United States and the world.[11]

MPI organizes an annual U.S. Immigration Law and Policy Conference in cooperation with Georgetown University Law Center and the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc.[12]

MPI "is guided by the belief that countries need to have sensible, well thought-out immigration and integration policies in order to ensure the best outcomes for both immigrants and receiving communities."[13] To aid this, MPI carries out the following tasks:

  • "Provides accessible and timely data, information, and analysis on immigration and integration issues that cover the major issues on which policymakers and the general public need information"[13]
  • "Pursues research that fills major gaps of understanding around migration flows and immigration and integration policy"[13]
  • "Assesses the effectiveness of current immigration and integration policies, as well as the impact of immigration on labor markets, educational outcomes, and social cohesion"[13]
  • "Promotes a trusted space for dialogue and a series of learning opportunities around ways to address immigration and integration issues"[13]
  • "Provides technical assistance to policymakers, practitioners, and nongovernmental organizations that are trying to solve specific immigration and integration challenges"[13]
  • "Develops innovative policy ideas to address immigration and integration challenges more effectively."[13]

MPI, while generally pro-immigration, takes a critical and evidence-based approach to improve the quality of immigration quality and standards across the globe, with a particular focus on the Americas and Europe.

Major Program Areas[edit]

MPI operates through three major program areas:

  • The U.S. Immigration Policy Program: "The U.S. Immigration Policy Program analyzes U.S. policies and their impacts, as well as the complex demographic, economic, political, foreign policy, and other forces that shape immigration to the United States. The program also offers influential thought leadership and policy recommendations regarding ways to improve the U.S. immigration system so that it works most effectively in the national interest."[14]
  • The National Center on Immigrant Integration Policy: "The National Center on Immigrant Integration Policy is a crossroads for elected officials, grassroots and nonprofit leaders, educators, journalists, researchers, local service providers, state and local agency managers, and others who seek to understand and respond to the challenges and opportunities today's high rates of immigration create in local communities."[15]
  • The International Program: "[A] policy laboratory for developing innovative, evidence-based, and politically feasible solutions to worldwide migration policy challenges."[16]

Migration Policy Institute Initiatives[edit]

MPI also has three initiatives focused on improving the quality of immigration policy and standards across the globe, particularly in the United States and its surrounding regions.

The Human Services Initiative[edit]

The Human Services Initiative focuses on "a range of immigration issues affecting children, families, and health- and human services programs and policies in the United States."[17] It further states that it "produces research, policy analysis, private convenings, public events, and technical assistance to inform federal, state, and local policies and practice."[17] In service of this initiative, the MPI works on the following issues:

  • Refugee Resettlement: "The initiative conducts research and delivers technical assistance to strengthen refugee resettlement services, with particular attention to underserved groups such as women, children and youth, and individuals with disabilities. The initiative engages in comparative studies to identify promising models that suit refugee resettlement in different national or regional contexts."[17]
  • Unaccompanied Children: "[Concerns analysis of] policies and programs that affect unaccompanied minors while they are in government custody, transitioning to local communities, or re-entering their countries of origin. The initiative engages providers, governments, community-based organizations, and others to improve services to these children based on child development and child welfare principles."[17]
  • Access to Benefits and Services: "The initiative examines the legal and policy frameworks set by governments to determine immigrants’ eligibility for public benefits and services such as Medicaid and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. It also focuses attention on systemic challenges in connecting asylees, children of immigrants and other eligible groups to available benefits and services."[17]

The Latin America and Caribbean Initiative[edit]

The MPI's Latin America and Caribbean Initiative works "to develop evidence-based research and innovative, effective policy solutions for the migration challenges facing Latin America and the Caribbean."[18] It focuses on the increasingly complex landscape surrounding immigration from and within Central and North America. The initiative currently focuses on:

  • Developing pathways for immigrant populations to legally immigrate to other countries
  • Improving immigrant integration in Central and North America
  • Increasing regional cooperation regarding migration management across Central and North America.
  • It also operates a Latin America and Caribbean Migration Portal that serves as a clearinghouse (in for migration research and analysis on the region.[19]

The Transatlantic Council on Migration[edit]

The Transatlantic Council on Migration (TCM) is a "unique deliberative body that examines vital policy issues and informs migration policymaking processes across Europe, North America, and Australia."[20] The council was founded by the MPI's founding president Demetrios Papademetriou, is based in Washington, D.C., and receives support from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, as well as the governments of Australia, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden.[20] The Council states it has a dual mission:

  • "To help inform the transatlantic immigration and integration agenda and promote better-informed policymaking by proactively identifying critical policy issues, analyzing them in light of the best research, and bringing them to public attention."[20]
  • "To serve as a resource for governments as they grapple with the challenges and opportunities associated with international migration."[20]

In these endeavors, the TCM's approach is "evidence-based, progressive yet pragmatic, and ardently independent."[20] The proposed policy options placed before the Council are vetted by leading experts, and are based in fields including:

  • "Advancing social cohesion and social justice through more thoughtful citizenship and integration policies that focus equally on rights and responsibilities."[20]
  • "Enhancing economic growth and competitiveness through immigration."[20]
  • "Encouraging and facilitating greater mobility through better security."[20]
  • "Understanding better the relationship between states and emerging religious communities and fleshing out the rights and responsibilities of all parties."[20]
  • "Understanding better the complex links between migration and development."[20]


  1. ^ Preston, Julia (2013-01-07). "Huge Amounts Spent on Immigration, Study Finds". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-07-02.
  2. ^ Caldwell, Stephanie Armour and Alicia A. "Trump Administration Targets Immigrants on Public Assistance". WSJ. Retrieved 2019-07-02.
  3. ^ "About the Migration Policy Institute". migrationpolicy.org. 2013-05-24. Retrieved 2022-05-07.
  4. ^ "Analysis | Mayorkas's claim that undocumented immigrants are 'promptly removed'". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2022-05-07.
  5. ^ Barry-Jester, Anna Maria (2017-10-05). "Who's In DACA — And Who Isn't". FiveThirtyEight. Retrieved 2018-12-04.
  6. ^ "How Trump is changing the face of legal immigration". The Washington Post. 2019.
  7. ^ "MPI - Mission". migrationpolicy.org. 2013-05-24. Retrieved 2018-06-29.
  8. ^ "Experts & Staff". migrationpolicy.org. 2013-05-21. Retrieved 2018-06-29.
  9. ^ "About the Migration Policy Institute". migrationpolicy.org. 2013-05-24. Retrieved 2019-01-24.
  10. ^ "Migration Data Hub". migrationpolicy.org. Retrieved 2022-05-07.
  11. ^ "TTCSP Global Go To Think Tank Index Reports | Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP) | University of Pennsylvania". repository.upenn.edu. Retrieved 2022-05-07.
  12. ^ THE MIGRATION POLICY INSTITUTE: A Unique Crossroads for Global Research and Policy Development - A Decade of Accomplishments (pdf) https://www.migrationpolicy.org/about/mission
  13. ^ a b c d e f g "About the Migration Policy Institute". migrationpolicy.org. 2013-05-24. Retrieved 2022-04-07.
  14. ^ "U.S. Immigration Policy Program". migrationpolicy.org. Retrieved 2022-04-07.
  15. ^ "About the National Center on Immigrant Integration Policy". migrationpolicy.org. 2013-07-19. Retrieved 2022-04-07.
  16. ^ "About the International Migration Program". migrationpolicy.org. 2013-08-05. Retrieved 2022-04-07.
  17. ^ a b c d e "Human Services Initiative". migrationpolicy.org. Retrieved 2022-04-07.
  18. ^ "Latin America and Caribbean Initiative". migrationpolicy.org. Retrieved 2022-04-07.
  19. ^ "Latin America & the Caribbean Migration Portal". Retrieved 2022-05-07.
  20. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "About the Transatlantic Council on Migration". migrationpolicy.org. 2013-07-17. Retrieved 2022-04-07.

External links[edit]