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Doug Massey: Train Wreck: US Immigration and Border Policy 1965-2010

  • 4284 Luskin School of Public Affairs Bldg 337 Charles E. Young Dr. East Los Angeles, CA 90095 USA (map)

Sociologist Doug Massey presents at the UCLA California Center for Population Research (CCPR) noontime series.



Despite the massive increase in border enforcement after 1986, undocumented population growth did not decrease, but rose. In this talk I undertake a systematic analysis of border enforcement as a policy for immigration control. Empirical results explain not only why it failed, but how and why it backfired. In the end, the militarization of the border did not increase the probability of apprehension at the border or reduce the likelihood of unauthorized entry; but it did dramatically change the geography of border crossing, increase the costs of undocumented migration, and elevate the physical risks of border crossing. Ironically, these trends had no effect on the likelihood of undocumented departure for the United States, but instead reduced the probability undocumented returns back to Mexico, thereby  increasing the net volume of undocumented migration and accelerating undocumented population growth.

About the Speaker 

Douglas S. Massey has served on the faculties of the University of Chicago and the University of Pennsylvania. His research focuses on international migration, race and housing, discrimination, education, urban poverty, and Latin America, especially Mexico. He is the author, most recently, of Climbing Mount Laurel: The Struggle for Affordable Housing and Social Mobility in an American Suburb (Princeton University Press 2013) and Brokered Boundaries: Creating Immigrant Identity in Anti-Immigrant Times (Russell Sage 2010). He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society. He is currently president of the American Academy of Political and Social Sciences and past-president of the American Sociological Association and the Population Association of America. Ph.D. Princeton University.

Earlier Event: January 10
Breakfast with Douglas Massey
Later Event: January 11
Monthly Journal Club