The issue of immigration plays a central role in the processes of regionalization and regional integration. Given its growing contestation, migration also spurs processes of disintegration and regional political conflict. Focusing on North American regionalism, this chapter contributes to our understanding of why, and in which ways, the politics of immigration can be a barrier to integration and a driver of its unmaking. The analysis of the development of North American regionalism in the chapter underlines that the fortification of borders and the integration of markets are not necessarily to be understood as contradictory phenomena.
Leila Hadj Abdou
Andrew Geddes and Leila Hadj-Abdou
Andrew Geddes, Marcia Vera Espinoza, Leila Hadj Abdou and Leiza Brumat
This chapter surveys the book’s three theoretical debates: regions and regionalism; international migration; and governance. It looks at each in turn and pays close attention to the ways in which it is governance systems themselves – through their organisational modes and practices as well as the ideas that animate them – that can play a key role in defining the migration challenge and its regional dimension. This means ascribing a direct role to governance systems and not seeing them as passive recipients of various forms of international migration to which they must then respond. The chapter then outlines the various contributions to the book as they develop these analytical themes and explore the dynamics of regional migration governance in highly diverse settings.
Andrew Geddes, Leila Hadj Abdou, Marcia Vera Espinoza and Leiza Brumat
This concluding chapter identifies four of the book’s key themes: how regional governance systems themselves play a key role in defining the migration challenge; how proximity and interdependence can but do not necessarily lead to closer cooperation; how regional migration governance is not simply a ‘space’ for new governance practices but actually embodies and reflects core political tensions around migration issues; and how regional migration governance demonstrates both the limits and possibilities of global cooperation on migration.