International migration constitutes one of the fields with the most pressing need for international cooperation today. Since the 1990s, multilateral initiatives attempting to address migration have proliferated. Frequently, however, they remain based on soft law frameworks or operational activities deployed by international and non-governmental organizations. In terms of developing an international regime for the regulation of migration flows, these initiatives remain hesitant at best, reflecting most countries' reluctance to tie their hands to new and binding international norms that potentially encroach upon the sensitive issue of national sovereignty. In the meantime, cooperation at the regional level has developed more dynamically. As a result, today we count formal schemes on regional mobility as well as regional consultation processes on international migration more broadly on all continents. Based on long-standing cooperation between the two applicants, this project intends to move the comparative analysis of regional migration governance in its multilateral context ahead, focusing on three main aspects: 1. The interplay between regional cooperation and multilateral institutions and initiatives; 2. The links and mutual influences between different regional cooperation settings, which could indicate elements of an emerging cross-regional consensus; and 3. The comparison across regional initiatives in order to establish a base of knowledge on existing commonalities and differences. We will address this research agenda through various channels, including cooperation in teaching; joint publications; the organization of an (externally funded) international workshop bringing together representatives from pertinent international and regional organisations as well as renowned and junior scholars; and cooperation in the development of a joint Research project as well as an annual summer school on Global and Regional Migration Governance.
Prof. Sandra Lavenex, Unige - Department of Political Science and International Relations and Global Studies Institute
Prof. Nicola Piper, Sydney - Department of Sociology, School of Social and Political Sciences