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Migration Working Group – Scholars of Excellence Edition: Regional migration governance and free movement regimes

September 27, 2022
10:00 AM EDT - 4:30 PM EDT
Hybrid (In person at CERC Migration office / online via Zoom)
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The Migration Working Group is a series of monthly sessions to discuss innovative research being done on migration and integration by emerging and established scholars. The series gives researchers an opportunity to present their ongoing projects, learn about each other’s work and share feedback.

In fall 2022, our visiting Scholars of Excellence led day-long workshops. Check our calendar for other workshops taking place in October and November.

Free movement regimes have become an important tool in migration governance at the global level. There are now several free movement regimes in various regions, and the Global Compact on Migration identifies them under objective five as an important tool to expand legal pathways for safe, regular and orderly migration. Despite their importance as a governance tool, free movement regimes have been the subject of scarce academic attention and their analysis has mainly been restricted to the case of the European Union. This workshop took a much more global perspective to discuss the functioning of various free movement regimes in Africa, the Caribbean, South America and beyond. Scholars debated the way in which these regimes interact with national legislative instruments and global legal frameworks, such as the Geneva Convention on Refugees, as well as how they are able to respond to imminent challenges including displacement due to environmental degradation. 

Workshop Agenda
10-10:30 AM EDT Welcome reception
10:30 AM EDT Welcome: Anna Triandafyllidou, CERC Migration, Toronto Metropolitan University, Diego Acosta Arcarazo, University of Bristol, and Joseph Teye, University of Ghana 
10:40 AM-12:40 PM EDT Panel 1: The promise and pitfalls of free mobility regimes in the African continent
  • Free movement in West Africa: Achievements and challenges to the implementation of the ECOWAS Protocol | Joseph Teye, University of Ghana  (PDF file) Abstract
  • Re-negotiating AU’s free movement protocol: Towards an effective migration governance | Adeoye O. Akinola, University of Johannesburg  (PDF file) Abstract
  • Regional migration governance in Eastern and Southern Africa | Linda Oucho, African Migration and Development Policy Centre / Migration Policy Centre  (PDF file) Abstract
12:40-1:30 PM EDT Lunch break
1:30-3:55 PM EDT

Panel 2: Addressing complex challenges through free mobility regimes

  • Understanding regional policy reactions to the Venezuelan displacement crisis | Feline Freier, Universidad del Pacifico  (PDF file) Abstract 
  • Removing walls and fences in the 21st century. Towards a new paradigm of borders, free movement and people? | Diego Acosta Arcarazo, University of Bristol  (PDF file) Abstract
  • Return migration, circularity and possibilities for enhanced mobility regimes | Zeynep Şahin Mencütek, Bonn International Centre for Conflict Studies, CERC Migration  (PDF file) Abstract 
  • Responding to refugee crisis and displacement through regional governance | Idil Atak, Toronto Metropolitan University  (PDF file) Abstract
3:55-4:30 PM EDT Reflections and concluding remarks