Immigration Policy from Scratch: The Universal and the Unique

28 Pages Posted: 19 Oct 2011

See all articles by Stephen H. Legomsky

Stephen H. Legomsky

Washington University in St. Louis - School of Law

Date Written: October, 18 2011


Governments of traditional immigrant countries and relatively closed societies alike are actively rethinking the very foundations of their nations’ immigration policies. Some are contemplating comprehensive immigration policies for the first time. Others are imagining wholesale restructuring of existing policies. Still others are tinkering at the edges. The scale, multiplicity, and variety of these efforts make it worthwhile to think generically about both the overall structure and the essential elements of a coherent and effective plan of action for immigration. To that end, this article seeks to identify the universal issues that any comprehensive immigration policy must address, while recognizing that vital national variables will inevitably raise additional issues and dictate differing resolutions. The goal in doing so is to produce a workable checklist for advocates, policymakers, and scholars as they attempt to craft or alter a comprehensive national immigration regime.

Keywords: Immigration, migration, aliens, United States, European Union

Suggested Citation

Legomsky, Stephen H., Immigration Policy from Scratch: The Universal and the Unique (October, 18 2011). William & Mary Bill of Rights, Forthcoming; Washington University in St. Louis Legal Studies Research Paper No. 11-10-05. Available at SSRN:

Stephen H. Legomsky (Contact Author)

Washington University in St. Louis - School of Law ( email )

Campus Box 1120
One Brookings Drive
St. Louis, MO 63130
United States
(314) 935-6469 (Phone)
(314) 935-5356 (Fax)


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