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Keynote Address

Migration and Invisibility in the Americas: The Importance of Non-State Actors Brokering Protection for People on the Move

Author:

Jeffrey Daniel Pugh

University of Massachusetts, Boston, US
About Jeffrey
Jeff Pugh is an assistant professor of conflict resolution in the McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies at the University of Massachusetts Boston. He received his PhD in political science from the Johns Hopkins University, after completing BAs in political science and speech communication from the University of Georgia. He is also the executive director of the Center for Mediation, Peace, and Resolution of Conflict (CEMPROC), based in Quito, Ecuador. He was previously assistant professor of political science at Providence College. Pugh's research focuses on the role of non-state actors and international institutions influencing governance and peacebuilding in the Global South, especially in migrant-receiving areas of Ecuador. He has published articles in International Studies Perspectives, PS, the Journal of Peacebuilding and Development, Conflict Resolution Quarterly, the Bulletin of Latin American Studies, and Negotiation Journal, among others. His work has been recognized with best paper awards from the International Studies Association Ethnicity, Nationality, and Migration (ENMISA) section, the Migration and Citizenship section of the American Political Science Association (APSA), and his dissertation won the 2011 Peace and Justice Studies Association Best Graduate Dissertation of the Year award, among other recognitions. He was a 2014-2015 Fulbright Scholar in FLACSO Ecuador. Under his leadership, CEMPROC has reached over 4,500 adults and children from more than 15 countries around the globe with its conflict resolution and peacemaking training programs. Pugh has developed innovative experiential and study abroad programs to teach international conflict resolution at the university level at Johns Hopkins University, the University of Georgia, Providence College, FLACSO, and UMass Boston through a combination of service-learning, simulations, lecture/discussion, and other teaching strategies. Currently, he co-directs the UMass Boston/FLACSO Summer Institute on Conflict Transformation across Borders in Quito-Ecuador. Pugh has taught Negotiation, Theories of Conflict Resolution, Immigration & Conflict, International Conflict Resolution, Peace & Justice, International Relations, Latin American Politics, Politics, International Organizations, and Model Organization of American States. He also served as past president of the Middle Atlantic Council on Latin American Studies (MACLAS).
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Abstract

The 2021 MACLAS Arthur P Whitaker Award-winning book, The Invisibility Bargain: Governance Networks and Migrant Human Security, is presented by the author at the 2022 conference of the Middle Atlantic Council of Latin American Studies (MACLAS) in New Jersey.

 

Migrants fleeing economic hardship or violence are entitled to a range of protections and rights under domestic and international law, yet they are often denied such protections in practice. In an era of mass migration and restrictive responses for Central Americans fleeing to Mexico and the United States, Colombians seeking refuge in Ecuador, and Venezuelans displaced to Colombia, Peru, and elsewhere, migrant acceptance is often contingent on the expectation that they contribute economically to the host country while remaining politically and socially invisible. These unwritten expectations, which Jeffrey D. Pugh calls the “invisibility bargain,” produce a precarious status in which migrants’ visible differences or overt political demands on the state may be met with hostile backlash from the host society. In this context, governance networks of state and non-state actors form an institutional web that can provide indirect access to rights, resources, and protection, but simultaneously help migrants avoid negative backlash against visible political activism. Based on the findings in his book, Pugh discusses the implications of migration for the Latin American region at a time when governments have closed borders and increased restrictions.

 

El libro ganador del Premio Arthur P. Whitaker de 2021, The Invisibility Bargain: Governance Networks and Migrant Human Security, es presentado por el autor en la conferencia de 2022 del Middle Atlantic Council of Latin American Studies (MACLAS) en Nueva Jersey.

 

Los migrantes que huyen de las dificultades económicas o de la violencia tienen derecho a una serie de protecciones y derechos en virtud del derecho nacional e internacional, sin embargo, a menudo se les niegan tales protecciones en la práctica. En una era de migración masiva y respuestas restrictivas para los centroamericanos que huyen a México y los Estados Unidos, los colombianos que buscan refugio en Ecuador y los venezolanos desplazados a Colombia, Perú y otros lugares, la aceptación de los migrantes a menudo depende de la expectativa de que contribuyan económicamente al país de acogida mientras permanezcan política y socialmente invisibles. Estas expectativas no escritas, que Jeffrey D. Pugh llama el “acuerdo de invisibilidad”, producen un estatus precario en el que las diferencias visibles de los migrantes o las abiertas demandas políticas al Estado pueden provocar una reacción hostil de la sociedad de acogida. En este contexto, las redes de gobernanza de actores estatales y no estatales forman una red institucional que puede proporcionar acceso indirecto a los derechos, recursos y protección, pero al mismo tiempo ayudar a los migrantes a evitar una reacción negativa contra el activismo político visible. Basado en los hallazgos de su libro, Pugh discute las implicaciones de la migración para la región latinoamericana en un momento en que los gobiernos han cerrado fronteras y aumentado las restricciones.

 

O livro vencedor do prêmio Arthur P Whitaker de 2021 - The Invisibility Bargain: Governance Networks and Migrant Human Security - é apresentado pelo autor na Conferência de 2022 do Middle Atlantic Council of Latin American Studies (MACLAS) em Nova Jersey.

 

Migrantes que fogem de dificuldades econômicas ou violência têm direito a uma série de proteções e direitos sob a lei nacional e internacional, mas muitas vezes as proteções lhes são negadas na prática. Em uma era de migração em massa e respostas restritivas para os centro-americanos fugindo para o México e os Estados Unidos, colombianos em busca de refúgio no Equador e venezuelanos deslocados para a Colômbia, Peru e outros lugares, a aceitação de migrantes é muitas vezes dependente da expectativa de que eles contribuam economicamente para o país de acolhimento, mantendo-se política e socialmente invisíveis. Essas expectativas não escritas, que Jeffrey D. Pugh chama de “barganha da invisibilidade”, produzem uma situação precária em que as diferenças visíveis dos migrantes ou suas demandas políticas abertas ao Estado podem receber uma reação hostil da sociedade anfitriã. Nesse contexto, as redes de governança de atores estatais e não estatais formam uma teia institucional que pode fornecer acesso indireto a direitos, recursos e proteção, e simultaneamente ajudar os migrantes a evitar uma reação negativa ao ativismo político visível. Com base nas descobertas de seu livro, Pugh discute as implicações da migração para a região latino-americana num momento em que governos estão fechando fronteiras e aumentando as restrições.

 

How to Cite: Pugh, J.D., 2022. Migration and Invisibility in the Americas: The Importance of Non-State Actors Brokering Protection for People on the Move. Middle Atlantic Review of Latin American Studies, 6(1), pp.1–14. DOI: http://doi.org/10.23870/marlas.403
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Published on 28 Jun 2022.

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