Prepare for the 21st Century Exodus of Migrants

Cross-border immigration accounts for much of the population growth in developed countries with low fertility rates. Such immigration has also become an election issue around the globe. Joseph Chamie, former director of the UN Population Division, urges countries to assess demographic changes and engage in thorough planning to provide adequate education, health care, security as well as food and water supplies. “Population projections depend on assumptions regarding future levels of fertility, mortality and international migration,” he explains, adding that migration is the most difficult to calculate. Population projections largely rely on recent history, and Chamie warns: “assumptions based on the recent past likely underestimate future migration because they fail to sufficiently capture the powerful demographic, economic and sociopolitical forces increasingly driving international migration flows in the years ahead.” Conflict, climate change and poverty contribute to migration. Good governance requires revised assumptions and adequate planning for domestic programs and foreign aid. – YaleGlobal