April 8, 2017
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International Conference on the Global Refugee Crisis

Organized by the UCLA Center for the Study of International Migration

Cosponsored with: 

UCLA Center for Canadian Studies

Center for European and Russian Studies

Center for Near Eastern Studies

International and Comparative Law Program


            Desperate people escaping conflict, persecution, and social upheaval are in flight across the globe.  While the world stands witness to tragedies unfolding daily, the search for safe haven proves elusive.  Going wherever they can find shelter from the storm, refugees have been converging on developing, often poor, societies, possessing limited capacity to take care of their own people, let alone the millions of uprooted newcomers.  Meanwhile, a few exceptions notwithstanding, the developed world has largely closed its gates, with the United States — up until now the principal destination for refugee resettlement – increasingly intent on making access to American soil ever more difficult than before.

            This conference – the second in a two day event – seeks to understand the causes and consequences of today’s Global Refugee Crisis, to explore the range of policy responses in both the developing and developed world, and to examine the challenges involved in resettling immigrants in both the United States and Europe. 

            This day will involve three sets of parallel panels, featuring presenters from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds, based in universities in Canada, France, and Italy, as well as the United States.  Papers will be available to registered conference participants on a password protected website.  Panels will follow the “Brookings format”: first, discussants will synthesize the papers and deliver a critical comment; the session will then immediately segue to discussion, ending with responses from the authors.  We anticipate that this format will make for rich and stimulating dialogue throughout the day.  The conference program follows immediately below.

Persons interested in participating in the conference should RSVP in the link:




Saturday morning:  9:15-11:45

Session 1: Haines 352

Carl Bon Tempo, Department of History, State University of New York at Albany: “US and Refugees in the 20th Century”

Rebecca Hamlin, Department of Political Science, University of Massachusetts, Amherst: “Migrant Categories in Crisis”

Stephen Porter, Department History, University of Cincinnati: “The Past Ain’t Through with U.S.”

Commentator: Roberto Suro, USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism


Session 2: Haines 279

Jaya Ramji-Nogales, School of Law, Temple University: “Migration Emergencies”

Hiroshi Motomura, School of Law, UCLA: “Migrants, Refugees, and Citizens”

Tendayi Achiume, School of Law, UCLA: “Xenophobia”

Commentator: Asli Bali, School of Law, UCLA


Lunch: 11:45 Sandwiches, refreshments available in Haines 215


Saturday afternoon: 1-2:45:

Panel 1: Haines 352

Susan Terrio, Department of Anthropology, Georgetown University: “A Sea Change after the “Surge” of 2014? Undocumented Families and Unaccompanied Children in U.S. Immigration Custody”

Jane Freedman, Department of Anthropology, Université de Paris 8: “After Calais: Creating and Managing (In)Security, Reception and Integration for Refugees in Europe”

Jonathan Hiskey, Department of Political Science, Vanderbilt University: “Why Central America Women Are Leaving: Gendered Responses to Neighborhood Violence and U.S. Deterrence Policy”

Commentator:  Ruben Hernandez-Leon, Department of Sociology, UCLA


Panel 2: Haines 279

Willem Maas, Depatment of Political Science, York Unviersity: “Borders, Refugees, and Multilevel Citizenship in Europe and North America”

Margaret Peters, Department of Political Science, UCLA: “Explaining Migrant Waves”

Audrey Macklin, School of Law, University of Toronto: “Private Refugee Sponsorship”

Commentator: Roger Waldinger, Department of Sociology, UCLA


Saturday afternoon: 3:15-5:30

Panel 1: Haines 352

Jessica Darrow, School of Social Service Administration, University of Chicago: “Client Voice in Refugee Resettlement”

Molly Fee, Sociology, Department of Sociology, UCLA: “The Policy and Practice of the U.S. Refugee Resettlement Program: Structural Constraints and Consequences”

Chiara Marchetti, Department Anthropology, Università di Verona: “Is There a Refugee Crisis in Italy?”

Commentator: Yeheskel Hasenfeld, Department of Social Welfare, UCLA