Volume 45 Number 176,
January-March 2014

The Challenges of International Migration, Ana María Aragonés (coord.), unam-Institute of Economic Research, Mexico, 2012.

Migration is a social phenomenon affected by multiple factors, which makes it challenging to create a unified theory of migration. In response to this difficulty, new and necessary areas of research have arisen, focused on studying migration as a multi-variable and multi-disciplinary topic. Thus the arrival of The Challenges of International Migration, coordinated by Ana María Aragonés, which provides a research agenda that revolves around migration in its different facets: migration for economic reasons, migratory regulation through visas, the brain drain, the rights of migrant children, and more. In summary, this text is divided into four themes: crisis and migration, qualified migration, mobility and rights, and migration and health.

Taken as a whole, this book reviews the most recent debates and lines of research related to the phenomenon of migration. Below are some of the topics it addresses:

  • In “Effects of the Crisis on Mexico-United States Migration from 2000-2010,” Ana María Aragonés, Esperanza Ríos and Ulberto Salgado provide research that puts migration in perspective with the economic challenges in which it takes place. This work analyzes the role of Mexican migration in the context of the 2001-2003 and 2007-2009 crises, based on the Current Population Survey, to prepare an analysis of the behavior of employment in the time period 2000-2010. They also evaluate the behavior of five economic sectors for Mexican migrants and natives.
  • In “Qualified Migration in the United States: Temporary Visas,” the author Paz Trigueros Legrreta describes the working visa scenario, the adoption of this system and, in general terms, the way in which these visas are currently assigned. Thanks to globalization, there has been a spike in the migration of highly qualified workers. In this context, the author provides quantitative evidence of increases of all types of visas throughout this work.
  • In the text "Research on Student Mobility and the Migration of Highly Qualified Human Resources in Latin America and the Caribbean, Vacuums and Repetition;” Silvie Didou Aupetiti introduces a topic that has gained importance since the beginning of the last decade. This work is supported by a statistical review of the migration of professionals and students. The author explains the various interventions that could take place by implementing public policy. Throughout the work, the author highlights three elements: a) proposing the use of networks of qualified professionals, b) recommending increasing the rate of return for fellows and scholars through credit providers and c) organizing the flow of this type of migration through associations and networks of professionals. Finally, the text is enriched with some suggestions for future research on this topic.
  • In “Migration and the Return of the Migrant Child: Challenges for Schools in Northeastern Mexico," Gloria Ciria Valdéz-Gardea contributes a line of research regarding returned migrants, with the qualification that it is a limited topic. She identifies students from Sonora who have educational difficulties on both sides of the border and analyzes migrant children in the framework of anti-immigration policies, aiming to understand the challenges of educational insertion upon return. This text depicts the vulnerability of returning children in the face of administrative processes, and the consequences of this situation, including, for example, following behind in school.
  • In “Old and New Manifestations of Migrant Oppression: Reflections on the Mexican Experience,” Rodolfo Casillas introduces the chilling violence that migrants have experienced, mentioning abuses such as human trafficking and kidnapping. First, he explains the concept of violence through belonging, and how its history has been legally strengthened. He then presents testimony of new types of aggression, to later provide a final conclusion that calls on social sectors to break these practices of abuse towards migrant communities.
  • In “Central American Migrants in Transition: Hondurans in Tabasco, Mexico,” Luis Alfredo Arriola Vega writes about the temporary establishment of migrants in Mexican territory, especially of Hondurans in Tabasco. The first section provides a theoretical review of the term en-de tránsito (in transit), and then provides a description of this group and its environment. Throughout the work, the author offers diverse reflections, culminating in an interview that highlights the treacherous road of being in transit.
  • In “Mixed Migratory Movements in the Dawn of the Twenty-First Century from the Perspective of Organizations Defending Human Rights and Civil Society," Marco Antonio López Galicia describes this topic from the perspective of organizations. Intercultural conflicts, the right to mobility and focused movements derived from the violence of countries of origin are all included in the reflections this author describes in his work.
  • In “Migration and Health: The Perspective of International Public Health," Luis Gerardo Castellanos examines the panorama of public health in a variety of migrant communities, providing figures and visual aids that back up this conflict. The author offers the following reflection: "The health needs of migrants, while important, are symptoms of underlying structural processes intrinsically linked to equality and human rights" (260).
  • In “Migration and aids in Mexico and Central America: Social Vulnerability and Health,” René Leyva Flores, Frida Quintino and César Infante address the topic of hiv/aids associated with migration as a result of the living conditions generated by population movements. The growing heterogeneity of migrant groups, as well as their activities, has led to increasingly complex situations that pose challenges for prevention programs. In this context, this work offers the experience of projects that promise to involve government participation, providing information, follow-up and reliability to programs aiming to reduce the spread of hiv/aids.

This text, coordinated by Ana María Aragonés, invites readers to reflect upon the topic of migration and the challenges facing migrants. This book is a pleasant read and increases awareness by providing convincing data for each line of research. This contribution will undoubtedly generate a timely debate for the agendas of governments and societies.

Diana Atempa
Institute of Economic Research – unam

Published in Mexico, 2012-2017 © D.R. Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM).
PROBLEMAS DEL DESARROLLO. REVISTA LATINOAMERICANA DE ECONOMÍA, Volume 48, Number 191, October-December 2017 is a quarterly publication by the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Ciudad Universitaria, Coyoacán, CP 04510, México, D.F. by Instituto de Investigaciones Económicas, Circuito Mario de la Cueva, Ciudad Universitaria, Coyoacán,
CP 04510, México, D.F. Tel (52 55) 56 23 01 05 and (52 55) 56 24 23 39, fax (52 55) 56 23 00 97, www.probdes.iiec.unam.mx, revprode@unam.mx. Journal Editor: Alicia Girón González. Reservation of rights to exclusive use of the title: 04-2012-070613560300-203, ISSN: pending. Person responsible for the latest update of this issue: Minerva García, Circuito Maestro Mario de la Cueva s/n, Ciudad Universitaria, Coyoacán, CP 04510, México D.F., latest update: Nov 13th, 2017.
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