IGL Holds 34th Annual Norris and Margery Bendetson EPIIC International Symposium

In March, the Institute held the 34th Annual Norris and Margery Bendetson EPIIC International Symposium on “Migration in a Turbulent World”

Migration has become a worldwide phenomenon and its importance today is clear. Concerns with the demographic, economic, social, security, legal and political consequences of international migration informed the EPIIC students’ decisions in choosing their panel themes and their speakers.

Foreign Minister of the Slovak Republic and President of the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly Miroslav Lajčák was one of the featured keynote speakers, receiving the Dr. Jean Mayer Global Citizenship Award.  He spoke on “The Need for Better Managing International Migration”, and he was speaking from experience since he had shepherded the Global Compact for Migration through the United Nations and to its signing by 164 nations in December 2018.

Renowned economist Paul Collier also delivered a keynote address for the symposium on “Sustainable Migration”. The author of Exodus: How Migration Is Changing Our World, which the students read in the fall colloquium, Prof. Collier is also the Director of the International Growth Centre and Professor of Economics and Public Policy at the Blavatnik School Of Government at the University of Oxford.  Prof. Collier received the Dr. Jean Mayer Global Citizenship Award for his scholarship and dedication to finding practical solutions to complex global issues.

The third recipient of the Dr. Jean Mayer Global Citizenship Award this year was Senator Ratna Omidvar of Canada. Senator Omidvar is an internationally recognized voice on migration, diversity and inclusion. She arrived in Canada from Iran in 1981 and her own experiences of displacement, integration and citizen engagement have been the foundation of her work. In April 2016, Prime Minister Trudeau appointed Ms. Omidvar to the Senate of Canada as an independent Senator representing Ontario. Senator Omidvar is the founding Executive Director and currently a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the Global Diversity Exchange (GDX), Ryerson University. GDX is a think-and-do tank on diversity, migration and inclusion that connects local experience and ideas with global networks.

The panel topics of the symposium included “Barriers To Belonging: Integration, Adaptation And Exclusion”; “Hidden In Plain Sight: 21St Century Slavery And Human Trafficking”; “Gender and Migration”; “Defining Refugees in a Changing Climate”; “The Paradox of Sovereignty and Global Migration”; “Cities: Migration’s Frontline”; “How South to South Migration Is Shaping our World”; and “Movement and Order: The Securitization of Migration”.  Participants included Th Michel Bamani, Vice President and Counsel, State Street;  e Rt Hon David Lammy, Labour Member of Parliament, Tottenham, United Kingdom; Hardin Lang Vice President, Programs and Policy, Refugees International; Kathleen Newland, Senior Fellow and Co-Founder, Migration Policy Institute; Liav Orgad, Associate Professor, Lauder School of Government, Diplomacy and Strategy IDC Herzliya; Caglar Ozden, Lead Economist, Development Research Group, World Bank; IGL Alumna Kerri Talbot, Director of Federal Advocacy, Immigration Hub and former Chief Counsel to U.S. Senator Robert Menendez;  Peter Tinti, Journalist and co-author, Migrant, Refugee, Smuggler, Savior;  and Astrid Ziebarth, Senior Migration Fellow, German Marshall Fund.

Fouad Ben Ahmed, Liaison between residents and the Local Government in Département 93, Bondy, Paris, and the recipient of the Robert and JoAnn Bendetson Public Diplomacy Award from the IGL in 2016, also returned to share his current efforts at bringing communities together.

The symposium also featured expert-led, small-group breakout sessions on “The Future of Climate Refugees”, led by Mariam Traore Chazalnoel, Associate Expert on Migration, Environment and Climate Change for the International Organization for Migration; “Migrant Labor in the Gulf and the 2022 Qatar World Cup”, led by George Naufal, Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in Bonn, and Sarah Lee Whitson, Executive Director of the Middle East and North Africa Division of Human Rights Watch; “The Rohingya Refugee Crisis”, led by Charlie Carstens, PhD Candidate from the Committee on the Study of Religion at Harvard University; “Debunking Economic Myths on Migration”, led by Anna Hardman from the Department of Economics at Tufts; “Migration in the Mediterranean”, led by Monika Wohlfeld, German Chair for Peace Studies and Conflict Prevention at The Mediterranean Academy of Diplomatic Studies at the University of Malta; and “Meeting the Need? Development, Investment, Infrastructure and Migration”, led by Tufts alumni Leila Abu-Gheida of FHI 360 and Patrick Gilmartin of the Black Rhino Group.

Tufts faculty members participating in the symposium were Karen Jacobsen, Henry J. Leir Professor in Global Migration of The Fletcher School; Ayesha Jalal, Mary Richardson Professor of History; and Anna Hardman.

The Institute welcomed 66 students from international delegations as part of the IGL’s Tufts Initiative for Leadership and International Perspective (TILIP).  This is the largest group of students we have hosted for the week of TILIP programming, which included the delegations presenting on the challenges and opportunities of migration in their respective countries.  The countries represented were: Argentina, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Greece, Israel, Russia, and Singapore.  The universities sending delegations were Universidad de San Andrés, Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco, Universidade de São Paul, Universidade de São Paulo, Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Minas Gerias, Universidade FUMEC, Centro Universitário Jorge Amado, Centro Universitário Jorge Amado, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco, University of Alberta, University of Ottawa, Peking University, Sciences Po Toulouse, Panteion University, University of Haifa, MGIMO, RANEPA, and the National University of Singapore.

To watch the panels: http://tuftsgloballeadership.org/video