Readings on Safe Mobility and HIV: Volume II

31 Dec 2007


The document highlights the links between migration, gender dimensions of migration, development and the Millennium Development Goals framework. It discusses in detail how levels of development affect migration decisions and how migration impacts the levels of development.gender and migration.

Levels of development may lead to migration or encourage people to stay put. Migration has the potential to challenge and support the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) at the same time (IOM 2005c). Yet migration does not feature prominently in development debates and the MDG framework. In fact it is only recently that the links between migration and development, and in turn the MDGs, have been recognised by both the migration and the development “communities” (Usher 2005). Gender, in turn, influences how development and migration impact on each other. Gender dimensions of migration, it has been suggested, are important to the achievement of the whole range of MDGs and not just the gender equality Goal 3 (Murison 2005). Working for greater gender equality in migration not only benefits women migrants but also increases the development impact of migration, moving us closer to meeting the MDGs (Usher 2005).

However, there is a clear lack of research on the impact of migration on broader social development and gender equality. In fact over the last 25 years there has been little concerted effort to incorporate gender into theories of international migration. This is partly because these theories have emphasised the causes of migration over questions of who migrates, therefore failing to address gender-specific migration experiences (Boyd and Grieco 2003). Similarly, the development impact of migration has been sidelined in international migration theory. In Section 5 on current policy approaches, the emerging development policies on migration and gender will be reviewed The interrelations between gender, migration and development are outlined in the tables below, drawing together some of the issues raised so far and relating these to development. The issues currently highlighted by development policy will then be discussed in further detail – i.e. remittances, “brain drain” and HIV/AIDS.

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