The Migration Initiative supports scholars at UCSB who’ve studied migrants around the world, from multiple disciplinary and intellectual perspectives. Our faculty affiliates have produced important research on immigrant integration and acculturation, health access and outcomes, refugee policies, and immigration histories in the United States and elsewhere, especially in the context of emerging nationalist politics and hostility toward immigrants. We have partnered with immigrant rights organizations in the Central Coast and across California, and we seek to provide a framework for our scholars to inform community groups, public officials, and other important stakeholders.

The Dean of the Division of Social Sciences, the Executive Vice Chancellor, and the Vice Chancellor for Research established the Migration Initiative in 2019, and we maintain a close affiliation with the Broom Center for Demography at UCSB.  We also have strong ties to several departments and schools, including Anthropology, Asian American Studies, Black Studies, Chicano and Chicana Studies, Communications, Education, Feminist Studies, Geography, Global Studies, History, Political Science, and Sociology—all of their leading faculty members have published important work on migration. Moreover, the Dean of Social Sciences, Charles Hale, identified “global immigration” research as his  first clustered area of excellence, and he has continued to recruit more faculty members along those lines.

Migration Initiative call for research proposals.

Please, read the requirements here!

Click here to submit your proposal

The UCSB Migration Initiative welcomes proposals for research support, for new and on-going scholarly projects in migration studies. Through the generous support of the Dean in the Division of Social Science, Charles Hale, and through additional funds from the Vice Chancellor for Research and from the Executive Vice Chancellor, the UCSB Migration Initiative will support up to five research proposals for up to $10,000 each, distributed over the Winter 2021 and Spring 2021 terms.  We are especially interested in funding new collaborations, particularly those that could generate additional extramural support.  We will also prioritize projects from faculty members who’ve joined UCSB within the last two years.

Our faculty affiliates have a distinguished record of research accomplishments in a wide range of areas in migration research—including immigrant health care, immigrant rights and immigrant activism, and immigration history—but we would encourage new proposals and collaborations across all three Divisions of the College.  We are especially interested, for example, in multidisciplinary collaborations that investigate the migration consequences associated with our current pandemic, as well as new research about on-going and forthcoming migration problems related to climate change.  We would thus welcome research projects designed by our colleagues in the Social Sciences, in the Humanities and Fine Acts, and in Mathematical, Life, and Physical Sciences.  In keeping with our research priorities in the past, we would also welcome projects that focus on our local immigrant communities here in Santa Barbara and in our surrounding region.  

The deadline for proposals will be December 30, 2020.  For application materials, please contact Amanda Pinheiro, the Graduate Student Coordinator for the Migration Initiative, at We will notify recipients of these awards by January 20, 2021. Awards will be administered through ISBER, and completed applications should include a budget consistent with ISBER’s Proposal Budget Guidelines. For all other inquiries, please contact the Director of the Migration Initiative, Professor John S.W. Park, at  

Resources on Migration Studies

The National Immigrant Justice Center released a report today examining the abuses and racism inherent in the U.S. government’s system of prosecutions that punishes people for entering the United States without authorization. Set against the backdrop of the rampant spread of COVID-19 inside U.S. prisons and detention centers and a nationwide call to confront the systemic racism in U.S. law enforcement practices that endanger Black and Brown communities, A Legacy of Injustice: The U.S. Criminalization of Migration sheds light on the deeply embedded injustices of migration-related prosecutions. These prosecutions account for more than half of criminal prosecution cases in federal courts and about 10 percent of the prison population.