The International Organization for Migration (IOM) conducts and supports research designed to guide and inform migration policy and practice. The Migration Research and Publications Division is based at IOM Headquarters within the Department of Policy and Research, and has the institutional responsibility for supporting the conduct and management of applied research on salient migration topics. Research is designed to enhance IOM's programme delivery and contribute to a broader understanding of migration patterns and processes, as well as the links between migration research and migration policy and practice. Research also feeds directly into IOM’s role as a publisher of applied research findings, including through IOM's flagship publication, the World Migration Report, papers published in the journal Migration Policy Practice, the Migration Research Series, and IOM Migration Profiles.

The Research Objectives of the Migration Research and Publications Division include:

  • Contributing to IOM's efforts to inform and shape migration policy agendas through policy-oriented research.
  • Supporting and strengthening research expertise within the Organization; providing technical support and guidance to field offices and departments at headquarters in developing (and implementing) research projects; and reviewing final reports/research/studies for publication.
  • Providing technical expert advice to governments and institutions; supporting efforts to enhance research capacities of governments and other bodies in order to contribute to sound policy-making.
  • Monitoring and supporting IOM migration research activities, and contributing to the knowledge base through gathering lessons learned and identifying best practices in activities related to migration research.
  • Identifying, promoting and fostering strategic and technical partnerships globally in the area of migration research.
  • Initiating research/studies in strategic areas of interest designed to enhance and improve IOM's programme delivery.

The Migration Research and Publications Division is one of IOM's oldest Divisions, with its establishment stretching back to the very beginning of IOM in the 1950s. The Division comprises the Research Unit, the Publications Unit and the Library. In addition to migration research functions and objectives, the Division is also responsible for:

  • Producing the biennial IOM flagship publication (World Migration Report);
  • Managing IOM publications on the online IOM Publications Platform, including on migration research and analysis;
  • Managing the independently-edited scientific journal International Migration, published by Wiley, which IOM established in 1961;
  • Cultivating and maintaining strategic relationships with key partners who produce and/or promote migration research and analysis; and
  • Assisting staff globally with library services.

IOM Research Team