International Forum on Migration Statistics 2018

Paris, France

15 January 2018 to 16 January 2018
Enhancing international cooperation in the field of migration


Migration has moved to the top of the policy agenda in many countries around the world, and as a result there are renewed calls for States to invest in improving data on migration. There is an urgent need to improve the availability, international comparability, timeliness and quality of migration data. Statistical projects and initiatives on migration and migrants are currently underway in many countries in national statistical institutes, relevant ministries and institutions, research centres, as well as in several international organisations. However, these initiatives often remain fragmented, confined to each discipline and are not usually brought together and disseminated in a comprehensive and integrated manner.

In this context, the OECD, IOM and UNDESA jointly organised the first International Forum on Migration Statistics. This is aimed at becoming a regular event that will contribute to intensify the exchange of information, to promote mutual learning and to facilitate cooperation among relevant stakeholders. It brought together all producers, analysts and users of migration statistics in a community of interest centred on migration measurement issues. It mobilised expertise from a wide range of disciplines - such as political science, economics, demography, development, geospatial science, sociology, statistics, and information technology - that can contribute to improve global understanding of the migration phenomenon.

Organization of work

Monday, 15 January 2018

09:15 - 09:45

Welcoming remarks

  • Angel Gurría, Secretary General, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
  • William Lacy Swing, Director General, International Organization for Migration (IOM)
  • Liu Zhenmin, Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, United Nations

09:45 - 11:00

Plenary session 1

Challenges for improving the production and use of migration data: Country perspectives 

How are National Statistical Offices (NSOs) responding to the growing demand for migration data? What is needed to improve the availability and timeliness of migration data? What is the role of NSOs to facilitate better and more appropriate uses of migration data?

  • Oliver Chinganya, Director of Statistics, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa
  • Jørgen Elmeskov, Director General, Statistics Denmark, Denmark
  • Mariana Kotzeva, Acting Director-General, Eurostat
  • Josie B. Perez, Deputy National Statistician, Philippine Statistics Authority, Philippines
  • Dominik Rozkrut, President, Statistics Poland, Poland
  • Edgar Vielma, Director General of Sociodemographic Statistics, Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía (INEGI), Mexico
  • Moderated by Martine Durand, Chief Statistician, OECD

15:45 - 16:45

Plenary session 2

Global initiatives on migration and data needs Conversation about data needs for the United Nations Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration and the United Nations Global Compact for Refugees

  • William Lacy Swing, Director General, IOM
  • Volker Türk, Assistant High Commissioner for Protection, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
  • Eva Åkerman Börje, Senior Policy Advisor to the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for International Migration
  • Moderated by Stefano Scarpetta, Director for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs, OECD


12:45 - 14:00


Working lunch: Integration and inclusive growth (by invitation)

  • Gabriela Ramos, Chief of Staff and Sherpa to the G20, OECD
  • Stefan Schweinfest, Director, United Nations Statistics Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNSD/DESA)
Tuesday, 16 January 2018

09:00 - 09:30 

Keynote addresses

  • Saâdeddine El Othmani, Head of Government, Morocco (to be confirmed)
  • Louise Arbour, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for International Migration (video)

09:30 - 10:45

Plenary session 3

Public opinion and migration

What is the evidence regarding the gap between perceptions and realities of migration? What are the best ways to communicate facts and figures on migration? How can policy makers undertake reform of migration policy in the context of polarized public opinion on migration?

  • Jon Clifton, Managing Partner, Gallup, United States
  • Marina del Corral Téllez, Secretaria General de Inmigración y Emigración, Ministerio de Empleo y Seguridad Social, Spain
  • Tim Dixon, co-founder, More In Common, United Kingdom
  • Ineke Stoop, Deputy Director – Methodological, European Social Survey, Netherlands
  • António Vitorino, former Deputy Prime Minister of Portugal and former European Commissioner for Justice and Home Affairs, Portugal
  • Moderated by Petra Kaminsky, Head of dpa-Story, Deutsche Presse-Agentur (DPA), Germany

13:30 - 14:45

Plenary session 4

Data innovation and big data for migration 
What is the potential of big data for migration statistics? What are the risk factors (continuity, confidentiality, reliability)?

  • Emmanuel Letouzé, Director and Founder, Data-Pop Alliance, United States
  • Cock Overbeek, Vice President Space, CGI Group Inc., Netherlands
  • Emma Rourke, Director, Public Policy Analysis, Office for National Statistics, United Kingdom
  • Emilio Zagheni, Associate Professor, University of Washington, United States
  • Moderated by Ambassador Laura Thompson, Deputy Director-General, IOM


Plenary session 5

Capacity building for migration data
What are the migration-data needs of developing countries (analysing existing data on migration, developing new instruments to capture data on migration…)? What types of support do these needs imply (financial assistance, training, information technology…)?

  • Carol Coy, Director General, STATIN, Jamaica
  • Leonello Gabrici, Head of Division for Migration and Human Security, European External Action Service, European Commission
  • Claire Melamed, Executive Director, Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data
  • Markus Reisle, Head, Global Programme on Migration and Development, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation SDC, Switzerland
  • Goetz Schmidt-Bremme, Ambassador for the 2017-2018 Global Forum on Migration and Development Co-Chairmanship of Germany, Germany
  • Moderated by John Wilmoth, Director, United Nations Population Division/ Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNPD/DESA)


17:50 - 18:00 Closing remarks by Mari Kiviniemi, Deputy Secretary-General of the OECD