The public is invited to events covering various aspects of immigration at this year’s Miller Upton Forum at Beloit College.

The two-day event kicks off Thursday with speakers from disciplines including geography, sociology, political science, law and economics who will discuss human migration and citizenship in two panel discussions.

“Immigration is a very sensitive and controversial issue today,” said Beloit College Department of Economics associate professor Diep Phan. “All of these panels and presentations look at the different aspects of immigration so the public can understand the causes and consequences of immigration so they are more informed as citizens and voters.”

Beloit College’s Miller Upton Program seeks to deepen students’ understanding of the wealth and well-being of nations through intimate interactions with preeminent thinkers. The Miller Upton Scholar is a public intellectual whose distinguished work and influential ideas become the driving force of the annual forum. With many leading scholars also at the forum, the conversation is enriched even further.

This year, the Miller Upton Forum features the 2021 Upton Scholar professor Giovanni Peri, whose work has greatly improved the understanding of the economic impact of immigration.

He is professor of economics at the University of California-Davis and founder and director of the Global Migration Center, a multidisciplinary research center focused on migration.

Phan said Peri, who will give the keynote address Friday, has published many works regarding the economic impacts of immigration and proposed very specific immigration reform to help improve the system.

Diep said the presentations not only cover immigration to the United States but also include information about human migration taking place all over the world, including internal migration in developing countries.

Each event will feature three speakers.

The first presentation will be at 7 p.m. today, Oct. 28, at Weissberg Auditorium. “Gender and Judicial Interpretation of Citizenship Law in Southern Africa” will be presented by Rachel Ellett, Beloit College professor of political science; “Interpretation at the Asylum Office” will be presented by Hillary Mellinger, an assistant professor of criminal justice and criminology at Washington State University and “Fears and Tears: Should more people be moving in developing countries and what stops this movement?” by The World Bank lead economist David McKenzie.

Another presentation will be held at 1 p.m. Friday, Oct. 29, at the Weissberg Auditorium. “Can Immigrants Help the U.S. Care for an Aging Population?” will be presented by University of Connecticut associate professor of economics Delia Furtado; “World in Motion Redux: How the Wealth and Well Being of Nations Influence Migrations” will be presented by Fernando Riosmena, an associate professor of geography at the University of Colorado at Boulder; and “Immigration Research and Policy: Opportunities and Challenges” will be presented by Katharine Donato, Georgetown University’s Donald G. Herzberg Professor of International Migration and director of the Institute for the Study of International Migration.

At 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 29, at Eaton Chapel, Peri will give the keynote address titled “Immigration and the Wealth and Well-being of ‘U.S.’ and ‘Them.’”

The college has a mask requirement for attendance. Events also will be livestreamed, so people can watch on YouTube and ask questions in the chat box if they choose to participate.


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