Research and scholarship are at the heart of the Center’s mission. The Center conducts or collaborates on a number of research projects that will advance the understanding of immigration and migration.
Since 2012, the Center has maintained and expanded the Archive of Immigrant Voices to collect stories of the experience of migration. The Archive serves as a digital repository for immigrant interviews conducted by UMD students in the Immigration and Migration Studies capstone course. The goal is to capture, record, and preserve the experience of migration, dislocation, and community formation as immigrants, asylum-seekers, refugees, and other newcomers themselves understood it.
The Center has partnered with the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH) to develop the Transforming the Afro-Caribbean World (TAW) project. The objective of the project is to bring together scholars of the Panama Canal, Afro-Caribbean history, and experts in the digital humanities, data modeling, and visualization for a two-day planning workshop that will discuss a large-scale effort to explore Afro-Caribbean labor, migration, and the Panama Canal. Ultimately, goals of the TAW workshop include digitization of a subset of the proposed records to evaluate potential costs and preservation issues; exploration of structured data tools to reveal new insights about these records; the creation of annotated bibliographies for use by teachers and the public as they begin to explore the centennial anniversary of the opening of the canal; and identification of other archives and repositories to be included in a larger project.
Additionally, the Smithsonian National Museum of American History and the Center are partnering to conduct research in the field of education and history with the goal of assessing the state of the field regarding the teaching and learning of immigration and migration history in K-12 across the United States. Using the data and analysis generated by the research, the team will advocate for the creation of a new framework for teaching migration/immigration across the country based on the study’s findings.
More information on the mission, progress, and outcomes of the Center’s projects can be found in the sidebar.