"As we are nearing the end of the first quarter of the 21st century, there are a number of major developments on the global scene that call for a continued scrutiny but also a nuanced vision on ethnic dynamics and immigration issues.
First, the issues of immigration policy, border security, rising ethnic tensions, new and ongoing regional and national political conflicts, multiple displacements and escalating refugee crises dominate the news in many different countries – from the United States, Canada, and Mexico in North America, to the UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Greece, and Ukraine in Europe, and to China, Australia, Myanmar, and New Zealand in East Asia and Oceania. This dominance has been so pronounced that the immigration/ethnic issues are frequently ranked among the topmost concerns in various nations, and the positions about those issues often determine the political directions and election results in different countries.
Second, there has been a global rise of a new right-wing populist wave, with direct implications for issues such as the meaning and possibility of citizenship, identity / sense of belonging, freedom, human rights, and justice. This is happening alongside a new wave of refugees surfacing as a result of an increased number of regional conflicts and proxy wars over geopolitical and economic interests, environmental disasters, and so on.
Third, despite the conservative and exclusionary politics in various western countries, citizens’ groups and solidarity movements have emerged or strengthened existing voices that support inclusion and integration of migrants and refugees."