GMPA: Global Migration Policy Associates

Migration Topics

Governance of Migration
(Research papers and policy briefs below)

Identifying appropriate and workable approaches to governance of 'natural,' permanent and worldwide migratory phenomena is urgent. The rule of law and legal mechanisms are recognized foundations for guaranteeing protection of migrants, obtaining democratic governance of nation-States, and for regulating relations among nations. Indeed, a comprehensive framework of international standards, institutions, stakeholder consultative forums and administrative mechanisms to protect migrants and regulate migration was carefully constructed over the last century.

Today, need for normative and policy guidance is evident in almost every country, and internationally. Globalized economic, social, political and demographic factors are increasing dependency of countries worldwide on foreign skills and labour, while absence of decent work, repressive conditions and environmental factors displace millions, making human mobility a predominant feature of contemporary globalization. Widespread abuse and exploitation of migrants undermine decent work and social welfare in many situations. Rising discrimination and xenophobia pose as yet unchecked threats to social cohesion. News media and public discourse paint migration as threatening security, society and the very identity of nations.

These features pose new challenges for national and local governments, for social partners and for civil society. However, in a contemporary environment of deregulation, existing rules, mechanisms and dialogue spaces for national governance and international cooperation are often overlooked or overruled. Dialogue abounds but little discussion is anchored in clear understandings of what governance means and what governance instruments apply to migration. Nor is much debate grounded in adequate, evidence-based assessments of existing conditions and historical experience and acquis.

Building on solid normative standards and worldwide experience, GMPA is engaged in review of established principles, policy frameworks, institutional setups and practical measures to reconsider their relevance to future as well as present conditions. Together with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, GMPA is organizing an informal conversation on international migration, human rights and governance among invited international experts on 27 September 2012.

GMPA is also focusing on regulation and governance of population (labour and skills) mobility in multi-State economic integration, common market and "free movement" areas. Today, more than 110 countries are part of one or more multi-country regional integration initiatives where freer circulation of people is formally established or is being negotiated. Another GMPA concern is to provide guidance and support for local authorities worldwide who have vital administrative roles and responsibilities in cities, districts, departments and regions with increasingly diverse and immigrant populations.


Focal Point Contacts

Patrick Taran

Jana Costachi

Tamirace Fakhoury

Piyasiri Wickramasekara


Documents and Papers