The Princeton Global Network on Child Migration

The Princeton Global Network on Child Migration brings together researchers from around the world to facilitate the analysis and dissemination of cross-national comparative research about the wellbeing of children and youth with migration backgrounds.  The network includes  interdisciplinary teams of researchers from research hubs in six host countries: (1) the CRCW in the United States; (2) the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Ottawa in Canada; (3) the Institute for Effective Education (IEE) at the University of York in the United Kingdom; (4) the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research at the University of Melbourne in Australia; (5) the Institute for Economic Analysis (IAE) at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona in Spain; and (6) the "Carlo F. Dondena" Centre for Research on Social Dynamics at the Università Bocconi in Italy. Drawing on the fields of demography, economics, psychology, sociology, and social policy, this project has led to two review papers, a conference in Bellagio, Italy (2008), and a policy workshop at Princeton University (2009). Another major event was the INSIDE conference in Barcelona in June 2011. Over the next few years, network researchers will conduct workshops and research seminars, and work collaboratively on projects while visiting the distinct hubs.

The project organizers, Sara McLanahan, Marta Tienda, and Alicia Adsera (CRCW), are working to bring together two fields of research that have generally been examined separately: the study of migration and its consequences and research on child/youth development and wellbeing. The goal of the project is to address two main questions: How does the wellbeing of children who migrate differ from that of children that remain in their home countries? And second, how do migrant children fare compared to native-born children in their host countries?

A grant from the Rockefeller Foundation served as a starting point for the project and enabled McLanahan and Tienda to assess the current state of knowledge on child migration. This work highlighted areas that have been understudied, revealed where existing data was available, and identified leading researchers in the field. A more recent grant from the Jacobs Foundation to CRCW post-doctoral fellow Audrey Beck supported census analysis of the living arrangements and wellbeing of migrant youth in various countries. The Jacobs Foundation is also sponsoring a conference volume on child migration.

With support from the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies (PIIRS), the Princeton Global Network on Child Migration held a workshop in August 2009 that brought together a group of international researchers. The workshop was designed to identify high quality data and methodologies, establish a research network devoted to the study of children affected by migration, and identify policies that improve the life chances of migrant children and youth.

Additionally, Marta Tienda and CRCW associate Ron Haskins co-edited a volume of The Future of Children (spring 2011) called Immigrant Children.

Princeton University