This proposal requests a renewal of funding for the Mexican Migration Project to gather and disseminate high quality data on documented and undocumented Mexican migration to the United States. The MMP has been in the field since 1982 and from 1987 onward has received continuous funding from NICHD. The database has become a mainstay for research on Mexican migration to the United States and a model for similar data collection efforts in China, Poland, Ukraine, West Africa, Morocco, Bangladesh, and elsewhere in Latin America, yielding a growing body of data collected using comparable methods and instruments (see Massey and Capoferro 2004). The MMP initially focused on west-central Mexico-the states of Guanajuato, Jalisco, Michoacn, San Lus Potos, and Zacatecas. These states have consistently accounted for at least half of all migrants to the United States and represent the historical heartland for U.S.-bound migration. During the 1990s, however, new migration sources emerged in response to structural changes in the Mexican political economy and MMP investigators expanded data collection geographically to include new sending regions throughout the country, eventually compiling samples from 24 of Mexico's 32 states. Together these states account for almost 90% of all undocumented migrants who registered for Mexico's consular ID card (Massey, Rugh, and Pren 2010). At this point, the most serious geographic omission in the MMP database is Mexico's Federal District, which accounts for around 7% of all undocumented migrants who registered for the consular ID card. In the coming period this gap will be filled by surveying neighborhoods in Mexico City. Given recent declines in the likelihood of undocumented departure and the rising frequency of circulation in legal status, we also propose to survey new communities in west-central Mexico, as this region offers the longest history of migration and the largest stock of migratory experience to assess the nature and reasons for trends over time. At the same time, we also will continue to conduct surveys in new origin areas located in Mexico's central region. We also propose to use an innovative new approach to improve coverage of the large population of undocumented migrants living in the United States and will add new questions to the survey instrument to assess the effect of violence on migration to the United States, and also to phase in a new team of investigators capable of leading the project into the future.

Public Health Relevance

Mexican immigration has been the driving force behind the surge of Latino population growth in the United States, accounting for 15% of U.S. population growth between 1990 and 2010. As a result, Hispanics now comprise nearly 17% of the U.S. population and are projected to reach nearly 30% by 2050. However, some 60% of all Mexican immigrants are undocumented during a time when legal status has become a powerful predictor of socioeconomic status, health, and well-being. As the baby boom retires and the workforce is increasingly composed of first and second generation Latino workers, the health and economic status of Mexican migrants will have profound effects on the well-being of the aging white population who they will be supporting through their work and taxes. The MMP represents a core resource for those seeking to understand the past and future of Mexico-U.S. migration and has become a central component in the de facto system of immigration statistics for the United States (Massey 2010).

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Research Project (R01)
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Study Section
Social Sciences and Population Studies B Study Section (SSPB)
Program Officer
Clark, Rebecca L
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Princeton University
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United States
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(2017) Corrigendum J Ethn Migr Stud 43:i-iii
Willekens, Frans; Massey, Douglas; Raymer, James et al. (2016) INTERNATIONAL MIGRATION. International migration under the microscope. Science 352:897-9
Massey, Douglas S; Durand, Jorge; Pren, Karen A (2016) Why Border Enforcement Backfired. AJS 121:1557-1600
Durand, Jorge; Massey, Douglas S; Pren, Karen et al. (2016) [The MMP (Mexican Migration Project): Monitoring and Analyzing the Process of Mexico-US Migration]. Coyunt Demogr 10:105-113
Massey, Douglas S (2015) A Missing Element in Migration Theories. Migrat Lett 12:279-299
Massey, Douglas S; Durand, Jorge; Pren, Karen A (2015) Border Enforcement and Return Migration by Documented and Undocumented Mexicans. J Ethn Migr Stud 41:1015-1040
Massey, Douglas S; Gentsch, Kerstin (2014) Undocumented Migration and the Wages of Mexican Immigrants. Int Migr Rev 48:482-499
Massey, Douglas S; Pren, Karen A (2012) Unintended consequences of US immigration policy: explaining the post-1965 surge from Latin America. Popul Dev Rev 38:1-29
Riosmena, Fernando; Massey, Douglas S (2012) Pathways to El Norte: origins, destinations, and characteristics of Mexican migrants to the United States. Int Migr Rev 46:3-36
Massey, Douglas S; Pren, Karen A (2012) Origins of the New Latino Underclass. Race Soc Probl 4:5-17

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