Ten institutes receive grants to work on immigration and integration issues
Each year, the German Marshall Fund of the United States provides substantial financial support to university institutes and think tanks in the U.S. and Europe working on immigration and integration issues. They are selected under the auspices of GMF's Immigration and Integration Program in a competitive application process and awarded one-year grants for convening and dissemination activities. This year, $400,000 in grant money was awarded to ten think tanks and policy institutes.
Those institutes receiving grants are:
- International Migration Institute, University of Oxford, United Kingdom
- Swiss Forum for Migration and Population Studies, Neuchâtel, Switzerland
- OSA Institute for Labour Studies, Tilburg, The Netherlands
- Institute for Urban and Regional Research, Vienna, Austria
- Economic Policy Institute, Sofia, Bulgaria
- Research Center for International and European Foreigners and Asylum Law, University of Konstanz, Germany
- Migration Research Program, Koç University, Istanbul, Turkey
- Center for International Relations, Warsaw, Poland
- Migration Dialogue, University of California, Davis, United States
- Institute for the Study of International Migration, Washington, DC, United States
On May 27, the representatives from this year's supported institutions joined members of the German Bundestag, practitioners, and foundation representatives in Berlin for an event to mark the beginning of the newly funded activities.
Tamar Jacoby, Founder and President of ImmigrationWorks, Steffen Angenendt, Senior Associate at the Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP), and Cem Özdemir, a Member of the European Parliament for the Greens/EFA Parliamentary Group, focused on the role of immigration in the U.S. presidential election. It was pointed out that immigration will not be one of the most important issues in the presidential election as the candidates' views on immigration don't diverge widely. Some felt the same could be said for the upcoming German election in 2009: as Roland Koch lost the election in Hessen amid concerns of immigration and security policy, the political parties will be very careful to touch it. Looking to the next U.S. administration, no matter who is president, experts predicted that there will be real movement on immigration bills in the latter part of 2009 or early 2010.
The next day, representatives from grantee institutes met for a half-day workshop to present their projects and receive feedback from their peers. Next year's activities focus on topics such as local integration policies, migration and security/illegal immigration, labor mobility, and migration and development. The discussion featured proposal presentations by each institute, which led to the suggestion of contacts and the discovery of possible synergies between grantees. The workshop was another step in the ongoing work of GMF´s Immigration and Integration Program, which seeks to foster transatlantic communication and cooperation on a variety of timely migration topics.