IOM Global Initiatives

Outside the UK, IOM carries out a diverse range of activities. This page highlights three of these initiatives which are relevant to the UK context. To find out about IOM's wide-ranging global activities, click here.  

Global Humanitarian Assistance

IOM’s activities in emergency and post-emergency situations focus on four phases of emergency intervention: mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery. Programme activities cover emergency relief, return, reintegration, capacity-building and protection of the rights of affected populations.

In the global efforts to address the growing needs of crisis-affected populations, IOM works in “collaborative responses” through the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) within the United Nations system. IOM takes on the lead role, under the cluster approach of the UN Consolidated Appeals Process in camp coordination and camp management in natural disasters. In close partnership with other organisations, IOM assists in the coordination of emergency shelter, logistics, health, protection and early recovery for crisis-stricken communities. To read more about IOM's work in this field, please click here.

Migration and Climate Change

Migration, climate change and the environment are interrelated. Just as environmental degradation and disasters can cause migration, movement of people can also entail significant effects on surrounding ecosystems. This complex nexus needs to be addressed in a holistic manner, taking into account other possible mediating factors including, inter alia, human security, human and economic development, livelihood strategies and conflict. Migration often seems to be misperceived as a failure to adapt to a changing environment.  Instead, migration can also be an adaptation strategy to climate and environmental change and is an essential component of the socio-environmental interactions that needs to be managed.  Migration can be a coping mechanism and survival strategy for those who move. At the same time, migration, and mass migration in particular, can also have significant environmental repercussions for areas of origin, areas of destination, and the migratory routes in between and contribute to further environmental degradation.

IOM's central objectives in managing environmental migration are:

  • First, to prevent forced migration resulting from environmental factors to the extent possible.
  • Second, where forced migration does occur, to provide assistance and protection to affected populations, and seek durable solutions to their situation.
  • Third, to facilitate migration as an adaptation strategy to climate change.

The Migration, Environment and Climate Change: Evidence for Policy project aims to contribute to the global knowledge base on the relationship between migration and environmental change, including climate change. The innovative research will aim to formulate policy options on how migration can benefit adaptation strategies to environmental and climate change. To find out more about this project, click here.

To find out more about IOM's approach to migration and climate change, click here. For an overview of IOM reports and publications on migration and climate change, click here.

Migrants in Countries in Crisis (MICIC) Initiative

The Migrants in Countries in Crisis (MICIC) Initiative, a government-led effort co-chaired by the United States and the Philippines, aims to improve the protection of migrants when the countries in which they live, work, study, transit, or travel experience a conflict or natural disaster.

Through a broad and inclusive consultative process launched in 2014, the MICIC Initiative developed Guidelines to Protect Migrants in Countries Experiencing Conflict or Natural Disaster. These non-binding and voluntary Principles, Guidelines, and Practices identify the roles and responsibilities of different stakeholders vis-à-vis migrants in countries in crisis and provide concrete guidance on how to prepare for and respond to crises in ways that protect and empower migrants.