A man and woman are seen in silhouette after breaching a border fence

Shifting our approach on migration from security to development


By Xavier Savard-Fournier, International migration specialist & Reporter and analyst of international affairs


It is right under our eyes, yet it is still hard to see for some. Not everyone experiences the same warm, welcoming attitude when crossing borders to seek refuge. As scores of people flee the war in Ukraine, many people of colour experienced discrimination, violence and racism or were blocked at borders.  Based on the same security-led migration narratives, similar cases have occurred since the European migration crisis of 2015-2016.

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forced displacement illustration

Le potentiel de la protection sociale en faveur des personnes déplacées de force


Par Jason Gagnon, Chef d’unité, Migration et compétences, Centre de développement de l’OCDE, et Jens Hesemann, Conseiller principal en politiques, Direction de la coopération pour le développement de l’OCDE/GPP, équipe Crise et fragilité


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Plus de 100 millions de personnes sont déplacées de force dans le monde aujourd’hui – chiffre jamais recensé auparavant. Les conflits armés, comme la guerre de la Russie contre l’Ukraine, continuent de chasser de plus en plus de personnes de chez elles, la plupart des personnes déplacées restant longtemps dans l’incertitude. Les pays à revenu faible ou moyen (PRFM) accueillent plus de 80% des réfugiés et des personnes déplacées internes dans le monde. Des politiques appropriées dans les pays d’accueil et une coopération au développement efficace permettent de trouver des solutions provisoires pragmatiques pour les personnes déplacées. Ces solutions provisoires sont gagnantes pour les communautés d’accueil comme pour les populations déplacées, l’intégration socio-économique offrant de multiples avantages.

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Closing the municipal finance gap for migrants and refugees

Closing the municipal finance gap for migrants and refugees


By Samer Saliba, Head of Practice, Mayors Migration Council


Although cities – not rural areas or camps – serve as the primary destination for migrants and refugees worldwide, city governments face systemic barriers to accessing the funding and financing they need to provide for these communities.

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How data can help migrants


By Andrew Young, Knowledge Director, The Governance Lab, New York University


Conflict is displacing more and more people across West Africa, including nearly 2.4 million people who have been forced from their homes by the Boko Haram insurgency in the Lake Chad Basin alone. People living in coastal areas face coastal degradation and erosion. Desertification in the western region of the Sahel is leading to significant livelihood and food security risks. Meanwhile the ongoing coronavirus pandemic is making the situation worse.

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How migrants can best benefit from the use of digital tech


By Tim Unwin, Chairholder, UNESCO Chair in ICT4D, Royal Holloway, University of London


UN agencies, donors, and civil society organisations have invested considerable time, money and effort in finding novel ways through which migrants, and especially refugees, can benefit from the use of digital technologies. Frequently this has been through the development of apps specifically designed to provide them with information, advice and support, both during the migration journey and in their destination countries. All too often, though, these initiatives have been short-lived or have failed to gain much traction. The InfoAid app, for example, launched by Migration Aid in Hungary amid considerable publicity in 2015 to make life easier for migrants travelling to Europe, posted a poignant last entry on its Facebook page in 2017: “InfoAid app for refugees is being rehauled, so no posting at the moment. Hopefully we will be back soon in a new and improved form! Thank you all for your support!”

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Women in an Internally Displaced Persons in Abuja, the Federal Capital of Nigeria, 2018.

Forced migration in Nigeria is a development issue


By Fatima Mamman-Daura, Acting Director at National Commission for Refugees Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons


No other country in Africa, outside the Democratic Republic of Congo and Somalia, is facing a mixed-migration challenge as severe as that of Nigeria, characterised by prolonged internal displacement, migrant smuggling, human trafficking and ‘brain drain’. Over the course of a decade, low levels of short-term internal displacement in Nigeria have transformed into widespread, large-scale and protracted displacement.

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Migración urbana y COVID-19: Las ciudades están en la primera línea de una respuesta inclusiva y de la recuperación

Por Samer Saliba, Líder de Proyectos, Mayors Migration Council1

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La comunidad internacional no está haciendo suficientes esfuerzos para apoyar económicamente a quienes más hacen por las personas migrantes, refugiadas y desplazadas durante la pandemia global: los Gobiernos de las ciudades. Aunque numerosas Alcaldías tienen el mandato de atender a las personas en situación de vulnerabilidad, tales como migrantes y residentes desplazados, frecuentemente las ciudades no cuentan con suficientes recursos económicos para responder a las crecientes necesidades de quienes van llegando. Asimismo, los Gobiernos locales de las ciudades han dejado de percibir ingresos debido a los impactos económicos del COVID-19, lo cual este año limita aún más su capacidad de brindar servicios fundamentales a los residentes. Según algunas estimaciones, los Gobiernos de las ciudades experimentarán una pérdida de ingresos de hasta un 25 % en el 2021, precisamente cuando necesitan incurrir en un mayor gasto para impulsar la recuperación y para atender a una población que crece continuamente. En una encuesta reciente, 33 funcionarios a cargo de las finanzas municipales de 22 países de todos los continentes expresaron que ya se observa una disminución del 10 % en el ingreso total y un aumento de aproximadamente 5 % en el gasto. Este “efecto tijera” de los ingresos y gastos de los Gobiernos locales tendrá un mayor impacto en las ciudades de países en desarrollo. Las ciudades africanas, por ejemplo, podrían dejar de percibir hasta un 65 % de sus ingresos en el 2021.      

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Understanding migration as an asset: the Colombian case

By Adriana Mejía Hernández, Vice Minister for Multilateral Affairs of the Republic of Colombia

The massive exodus of Venezuelan migrants is the world’s second largest migration wave and is unprecedented in the history of Latin America. Colombia, host to almost 30% of Venezuelan migrants, responded with comprehensive measures and most importantly, has approached the mass arrivals of migrants as an opportunity for development and growth. However, the lack of identity documents and irregular status of migrants are the source of many challenges to achieving an effective state response.

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Urban migration and COVID-19: Cities on the frontline of an inclusive response and recovery

By Samer Saliba, Head of Practice, Mayors Migration Council

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The international community is not doing enough to financially support those who are doing the most for migrants, refugees, and internally displaced people during this global pandemic: city governments. While many cities have the mandate to serve people in vulnerable situations, including migrant and displaced residents, they often do not have enough financial resources to meet the increased demand and need of new arrivals. Lost revenue due to the economic impacts of COVID-19 will further curtail cities’ ability to deliver critical services to their residents this year. Some estimates suggest city governments could see revenue losses of up to 25 percent in 2021, precisely when their spending needs to increase to pay for recovery efforts and continuously growing populations. In a recent survey, 33 municipal finance officials in 22 countries across all continents reported already seeing a 10 percent decrease in their overall revenue and around a five percent increase in expenditure. This “scissors effect” of local government revenue and expenditure will be most felt in cities in developing countries. African cities, for example,  could potentially lose up to up to 65 percent of their revenue in 2021.

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Inégalités et migrations internationales : garantir des avantages pour tous dans l’après-pandémie

Par Jason Gagnon, Économiste du développement, Centre de développement de l’OCDE

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La pandémie de COVID-19 a bouleversé les migrations internationales. Selon les Nations Unies, on comptait 272 millions de migrants internationaux dans le monde en 2019, soit 3.5 % de la population mondiale, ce qui reflétait une augmentation constante au fil des ans. Cependant, depuis le début de la crise, les migrations ont considérablement diminué. En raison des restrictions, l’accueil d’étrangers dans les pays de l’OCDE a chuté de 46 %. Dans les pays du Conseil de coopération du Golfe (CCG), et dans de nombreuses autres régions du monde, les tendances vont dans le même sens. Et la baisse générale des flux migratoires devrait se poursuivre en 2021.

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