Issue

Population & Migration

Population and migration issues are fraught with moral positions, confusion, and unexpected connections.

We cannot talk about population growth without also discussing decline; or contraception, without faith and medical technology. It is the mother of cross-cutting issues—at the intersection of economics, environment, gender roles, culture, politics, and religion. The population question is about the possibility and necessity of balancing the needs of nature and human civilization—and whether we can hope to or should have any say over the process.

The issue is global. Overpopulation of one region will seek release in an under-populated region. Stronger economies will be a magnet for those from weaker economies. Local carbon emissions will increase temperatures and change global weather patterns, disrupting food supplies and sowing insecurity. Diseases that begin in crowded slums can travel the world. Aging populations could lead to long-term economic depression, decreasing our ability to address the great problems we face such as environmental degradation.

Changing demographics in countries where men far outnumber the women often leads to human trafficking. Basic human rights are abused in countries where entire communities live without citizenship rights—unable to vote, own property, travel, work legally, or attend school.
Pulitzer Center grantees look at the effects of migration on climate and business, the efforts of immigrants to preserve their cultural identity, and the sacrifices they make in leaving family behind. Our journalists ask tough questions: How do refugees mobilize to take care of themselves when aid agencies fail?

Population & Migration exposes the risks and dangers refugees and migrants face as they leave one nation to seek a better home and a fresh start—only to find more obstacles and new threats. Resettlement presents its own set of challenges; hopes and promises prove illusory.

Population & Migration

'Guanajuato Norte'

A preview of "Guanajuato Norte," a documentary that features Winny Contreras, a migrant worker who leaves behind his family to work in the U.S. and help loved ones achieve their dreams.

We Have No Choice

Most African migrants heading to Europe unwittingly follow the ancient caravan routes of the trans-Saharan slave trade. Along the way, many are trafficked, sold, and brutally exploited.

Urbanization in the Developing World

This global reporting project on urbanization in the developing world examines how three major countries—China, India, and Mexico—are dealing with a similar challenge in their own unique ways.

The East African Migrant Smuggling Trail

Smugglers along the trail from East Africa to Europe, through Libya, tend to look after their own. Are former Somali pirates running Somali migrants?

Singapore Runaways

Singapore is a prosperous country in Asia and migrant workers have played an important role in its success, but at what cost?

China's Human Snakes Return

Why are people who were smuggled to the U.S. from a rural high school in China three decades ago now going back to China?

Refugee Boom and Bust: A Global Gold Rush

From smugglers in Agadez, to factory owners in Turkey, to the Italian and Nigerian mafias in Italy, and small business owners in Greece, people making a killing off the global migrant crisis.