Migrant and Refugee Integration in Global Cities: The Role of Cities and Businesses

Authors: Teressa Juzwiak, Elaine mc gregor, melissa siegel
partner: maastricht graduate school of governance, unu-merit

Publication date: 2014


Migration is a local reality. Cities are places where both migrants and non-migrants interact, be it through working, studying, living, playing or raising their families. This report blazes a trail by linking migrant and refugee integration policies, public-private partnerships and the local level in a comparative discussion. It will serve to fill an important gap in the literature.

The study, initiated by The Hague Process on Refugees and Migration (THP) in partnership with UNU-MERIT and its School of Governance, looks at how businesses and governments in global cities contribute to the economic and social integration of migrant and refugee populations, either through outreach, specialised programs, the provision of services or targeted funding of NGOs; and to what extent these contributions can be deepened or expanded. The study focuses on efforts by the private sector and city governments – both separately and in partnership – to give these groups greater protection and opportunities in employment markets and communities.

More specifically, this report identifies good practices among the selected cities as well as gaps in intervention by determining whether and how business and cities are currently working together to create opportunities for migrants and refugees to deepen their integration into society. Where there is presently no collaboration between the private and public sectors, the research identifies barriers and opportunities for potential partnerships. To this end, the research draws from eight case studies: Auckland (New Zealand), Buenos Aires (Argentina), Chicago (USA), Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia), Lisbon (Portugal), Nairobi (Kenya), Rotterdam (The Netherlands) and São Paulo (Brazil).

Final Report

The report is accompanied by eight individual case study reports, one per city, which provide further background information and discussion for the interested reader. Click on the respective city below to download the individual case study report:

Buenos Aires
Kuala Lumpur
São Paulo

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Advancing the Refugee and Migration Agenda in the Middle East – Arab Thought Forum/Working Conference

Location: Amman, Jordan
Partner: the Arab Thought Forum

Publication date: April 2005


This summary is made to report on an interactive 3-day working conference entitled ‘Advancing the Refugee and Migration Agenda in the Middle East’. The working conference took place in Hotel Le Meridien Amman, Jordan on Saturday 23rd, Sunday 24th and Monday 25th April 2005. We wanted to make this working conference different from many by making use of a specific working method which we used successfully during The Hague Process so far. The personal experience, wisdom and ideas of all participants were used to arrive at valuable recommendations which we hope will pave the way for new responses to the refugee and migration issue in the Middle East region within a global context.

The issues we concentrated on were three major themes:
1. Refugees in the Middle East;
2. Migration from the Middle East to Europe;
3. Potential of The Hague Process on Refugees and Migration as catalyst for change

Download the Report

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People on the Move: Handbook of Selected Terms and Concepts related to Refugees and Migration

Editor and project Coordinator: Antoine Meyer
Co-editor: Auke Witkamp
Editorial Advisor: Antoine Pécoud (UNESCO)

Publication date: july 2008


An extensive terminology has evolved to cover standing and emerging issues related to refugees and migration as they also relate to the larger fields of human rights and development. This handbook takes stock of the present use of some selected terms and concepts. It is designed to be accessible to a general public which may not be familiar with the detailed discussions in the field of refugee and migration policy.

Civil society and the business sector play an increasingly important role in migration, and we also hope this handbook may be of use to them. Another intended audience is the media, firstly because many of the current perceptions on migration and refugees are shaped there, and secondly because terms are often incorrectly interpreted in media coverage.

Words matter, for labels impact people’s views and inform policy responses.
Brief comments are provided to complement the definitions proposed, to cover related terms or to highlight some issues behind the words.

For the purpose of clarity, the definitions are listed under the following sections:

Persons & Statuses: to identify the fundamental distinctions between the various persons concerned.

Terms and Concepts: to provide insights into the realities of the field and clarify emerging or recurrent topics.

Concepts of Reference: to frame discussions within a human rights and development perspective.

Download the Handbook

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