Model International Mobility Convention

The Model International Mobility Convention (MIMC) proposes a better system for migration and mobility by addressing gaps in existing international law. It offers a comprehensive set of rules, outlining actions, rights, and duties that benefit both migrants and refugees as well as their states of origin, transit, and destination.

Cover of the International Mobility Convention.

Overview

International mobility—the movement of individuals across borders for any length of time, such as visitors, students, tourists, labor migrants, entrepreneurs, long-term residents, forced migrants, refugees, victims of trafficking, people caught in countries in crisis, and family members—has no common definition or legal framework.

The Model International Mobility Convention (MIMC) creates, for the first time, a holistic and cumulative framework to cover different categories of mobile people. It proposes a framework for international human mobility with goals of reaffirming their existing rights, while also expanding those rights where warranted.

Seeking to better protect the rights of all persons crossing international borders, the MIMC covers a broad spectrum of migrants and unpacks a range of migrant rights. By demonstrating what a better international mobility regime could look like, it hopes to take away undue concerns, assure uneasy publics, and inspire action.

Read the Convention

Model International Mobility Declaration

In 165 articles divided over eight chapters, the Convention establishes both the minimum rights afforded to all people who cross state borders as visitors, and the special rights afforded to tourists, students, migrant workers, investors, and residents, forced migrants, refugees, migrant victims of trafficking, and migrants caught in countries in crisis.

Some of these categories are covered by existing international legal regimes. However, in this Convention these groups are for the first time brought together under a single framework.

Sign the Convention

Development of the MIMC

The Model International Mobility Convention (MIMC) was developed by an International Mobility Commission at meetings organized by the Columbia Global Policy Initiative. It involved over forty eminent academic and policy experts in the fields of migration, human rights, national security, labor economics, and refugee law. The Commission came together to debate and develop the MIMC in workshops conducted regularly from early 2015 through April 2017. The MIMC is the outcome of this collaborative effort to produce a comprehensive and greatly needed international legal framework for human mobility. Through extensive deliberation, the Commission developed a coherent and equitable Model Convention

Having published the Convention, MIMC 1.0, in 2018, the next step in the development of the Convention was a meeting hosted in the University of Pennsylvania’s Perry World House in February 2019. The workshop produced the Model International Mobility Declaration (or MIMC 2.0), a summary version of MIMC 1.0. Continuing the promotion and progressive development of the Convention, the MIMC project joined Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs as an Impact Initiative.

Featured MIMC Podcasts, Events, & Articles

Insights from our Senior Fellows & Advisory Board

NOV 8, 2023 Article

Migration from Venezuela to Brazil: Addressing the Regularization of Undocumented Children

MAY 3, 2024 Article

MIMC at the Conference on International Migration

The Model International Mobility Convention attended the Conference on International Migration at St. Francis College, sharing a global perspective on current trends in human mobility.

DEC 15, 2022 Article

Revising MIMC: Finding Solutions to the Challenges of Today's Migration

On October 13-14, 2022, the Model International Mobility Convention (MIMC), Carnegie Council’s migration impact initiative, convened a workshop to find solutions to the most pressing ...

MIMC Team & Advisory Board

Michael W. Doyle

Carnegie Council Senior Fellow, Model International Mobility Convention (MIMC); Former Carnegie Council Trustee; Columbia University

Susie Han

Research Fellow, Model International Mobility Convention (MIMC); Columbia SIPA

Darién National Park in Panama. CREDIT: Harvey Barrison. (CC)

MAY 28, 2024 Article

Addressing the Human Tragedy in the Darién Gap: A Call for Innovative Solutions

With hundreds of thousands of migrants making the dangerous trek through the Darién Gap each year, MIMC could offer new solutions, writes Susie Han.

MAY 3, 2024 Article

MIMC at the Conference on International Migration

The Model International Mobility Convention attended the Conference on International Migration at St. Francis College, sharing a global perspective on current trends in human mobility.

The border between Brazil and Venezuela in Pacaraima, Brazil. CREDIT: Paolostefano1412.

NOV 8, 2023 Article

Migration from Venezuela to Brazil: Addressing the Regularization of Undocumented Children

Two Brazilian public defenders reflect on the status of undocumented Venezuelan children in Brazil vis-à-vis the Model International Mobility Convention.

JUN 23, 2023 Article

Model International Mobility Convention: An Inter-American System of human rights reflection on the non-criminalization principle

This paper aims to provide an Inter-American reflection on the Model International Mobility Convention (MIMC).

FEB 3, 2023 Article

"Forced Migrants," Human Rights, and "Climate Refugees"

Senior Fellow Michael Doyle explores arguments for assistance and asylum that those who are driven by climate to cross international borders can and should claim.

Cathryn Costello, Cornelia Woll, Reem Alabali-Radovan, & Michael Doyle

DEC 15, 2022 Article

Revising MIMC: Finding Solutions to the Challenges of Today's Migration

On October 13-14, 2022, the Model International Mobility Convention (MIMC), Carnegie Council’s migration impact initiative, convened a workshop to find solutions to the most pressing ...

DEC 15, 2022 Article

Family Reunification: Domestic and Human Rights Regional Courts Perspective

Domestic and regional courts have a relevant role not only in applying international law but also in developing it. This paper aims to critically analyze ...

Ukrainian refugee center in Moldova.

JUN 8, 2022 Article

Ethics & Artificial Intelligence: Migration

With Russia's invasion of Ukraine leading to Europe's worst refugee crisis since World War II, this article from researchers Gustavo Macedo and Lutiana Barbosa details ...

APR 21, 2022 Podcast

Global Ethics Review: Ukrainian Refugees & the International Response, with Michael W. Doyle

Since the Russian invasion began in late February, millions of Ukrainians have been forced to flee their homes. In this Global Ethics Review podcast, Senior ...

Italian navy rescues asylum seekers in the Mediterranean off the coast of Africa, June 2014. <br>CREDIT: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/vfutscher/42322119744">Massimo Sestini/Polaris</a> <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/">(CC)</a>.

JUN 20, 2021 Article

The World's Refugee System Needs to be Made Responsible

Today, we are faced with an unfair and ultimately unsustainable refugee system that simultaneously increases human suffering while placing the burden of hosting refugees on ...