The COVID-19 pandemic has changed human mobility for those of us washing our hands vigorously and avoiding social contact. But in addition to these disruptions to daily life, the pandemic could be fundamentally changing the face of global migration in at least five key ways. Not everyone wants to leave home, of course, but many (and many more than in 1918) see migration as at least one future pathway, whether it be permanently or temporarily with the hopes to one day return home. In many ways, the global economy relies on people making decisions to migrate: Central American tomato pickers in Florida, Bangladeshi construction workers in Abu Dhabi, and Indian entrepreneurs in Melbourne. Global migration has proven to be an integral and necessary part of our globalized economy, though its face has looked different in every region, country, and city, as well as to each family.
Until COVID-19 brought it all to a screeching halt. What are we staring at? *source CSIS