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This seminar discusses a recent Symposium issue of AJIL Unbound on Undoing Discriminatory Borders which was co-edited by Professor Cathryn Costello and Dr Catherine Briddick.

“The distribution of migration opportunities globally is deeply unequal, with nationals of some generally wealthy, stable, states benefitting from far greater migration opportunities than those from poorer, or unstable ones. An examination of any individual state's migration controls also often reveals problematic patterns of disadvantage. Contemporary migration controls frequently disadvantage women, racial and religious groups, and those whose sexual orientation, gender-identity or family status departs from the nuclear hetero-norm. To many, it is unsurprising that discrimination is rife in migration laws and controls, given that these practices reflect nationalist, colonial, and postcolonial projects of racialized and gendered exclusion and subordination. And yet, with a few notable exceptions the question of the legality of discrimination at borders is underexplored.”
(Briddick, C. and C. Costello (2021). "Introduction to the Symposium on Undoing Discriminatory Borders." AJIL Unbound 2021, 115: 328)

This seminar discusses the circumstances in which these inequalities, within and across states, are legally discriminatory.

Download seminar poster



Professor Shreya Atrey (University of Oxford)


Professor E. Tendayi Achiume (UCLA and UN Special Rapporteur on Contemporary Forms of Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance) - ‘Digital Racial Borders’

Professor Cathryn Costello (Hertie School and University of Oxford) - ‘Race Discrimination Effaced at the ICJ’

Dr Catherine Briddick (University of Oxford) - When Does Migration Law Discriminate Against Women?’

Professor Anuscheh Farahat (Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nürnberg) - ‘Discrimination Inside: Non-Discrimination as a Tool of Migrant Integration’

Professor Liav Orgad (WZB, EUI, IDC, STL) - ‘When is Immigration Selection Discriminatory?’

Professor Colm O’Cinneide (UCL) - ‘Why Challenging Discrimination at Borders is Challenging (and Often Futile)’


RSC, Oxford and CFR, Hertie School


Register on Zoom here

Related information

Undoing Discriminatory Borders Research 

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