Audrey Singer is a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Centennial Scholar Initiative. She is also a senior fellow at the Urban Institute’s Metropolitan Housing and Communities Policy Center where she works on demographic change in U.S. metropolitan areas, cities and suburbs, immigration and immigrant integration, and global refugee movements and municipal implications for long-term inclusion.
She recently co-authored a study of the implementation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) in eight metropolitan areas and a study of the EB-5 Investor Visa Program. Her co-edited book, Twenty-First Century Gateways: Immigrant Incorporation in Suburban America, focuses on the fastest growing immigrant populations among second-tier metropolitan areas including Charlotte, N.C; Atlanta; Dallas; Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn.; Sacramento, Calif.; and Washington, D.C.
Other Brookings publications include, “The Geography of Immigrant Skills,” “State of Metropolitan America: on the Front Lines of Demographic Transformation,” “Immigrants, Politics, and Local Response in Suburban Washington,” “The Rise of New Immigrant Gateways,” and “From ‘Here’ to ‘There:’ Refugee Resettlement in Metropolitan America.”
Her articles have appeared in academic journals such as International Migration Review, Demography, Urban Geography, Geographical Review, and Ethnic and Racial Studies, and her commentary has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN.com, Baltimore Sun, Christian Science Monitor, Seattle Times, and Vanguardia Dossier.
Prior to joining Brookings, Singer was an associate in the International Migration Policy Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Prior to Carnegie, she held a faculty position in the Department of Demography at Georgetown University and was a demographic analyst at the U.S. Department of Labor. She was chair of the International Migration Section of the American Sociological Association in 2010. She was a member of the National Academies of Sciences Panel on Immigrant Integration and co-author of its final report.
Singer earned a Ph.D. in sociology, with a specialization in demography, from the University of Texas at Austin. She has an M.A. in sociology also from the University of Texas at Austin and a B.A. in sociology from Temple University. She conducted postdoctoral research at the University of Chicago.
Immigration Reform: What’s Next for Cities and Metros
Building and Unlocking Immigrant Skills
The Immigrant Workforce and the Future of U.S. Immigration Policy
In the early '90s, these EB-5-funded projects were very practical, like building infrastructure and developing areas around closed military bases... There were a lot of projects like this and there are still some. But when the last recession took hold, developers had to look elsewhere to finance their projects.
[C]ities are places that are about people [and officials focus on how immigrants contribute to their communities; Governors are concerned about] what they see as a threat to their population as a whole and are interested in applying pressure to the Obama administration to help change that.
[EB-5] is a small program and makes a lot of noise, in both directions.
With that kind of attention [over the regional-center program], it seems like more people are making the case to change the TEA provisions of the [EB-5] program... [On the other hand,] in the past we’ve seen that it’s been easiest to just continue the program as-is.
Places that have been losing population see refugees as a resource... They often see these groups as a way to add to their population, labor force, and communities in ways that combat the population loss they've had over time.