History

The Hague Process on Refugees and Migration was established in the year 2000 with the aim of building consensus on the key opportunities and challenges associated with migration, including refugees, asylum seekers and other displaced persons. The organisation was initially formed in the context of an international, multidisciplinary Project on the ‘Future of Asylum and Migration’ (FAM) carried out by The Netherlands Chapter of the Society for International Development (SID NL).

The aim of THP in its first phase were to clarify and change current perceptions of the ‘refugee, asylum and migration’ issue from a complicated and difficult problem to a ‘normal’ issue of international as well as regional, national and local development.

Declaration of The Hague on the Future of Refugee and Migration Policy

More than 500 global experts were consulted to develop a ‘Declaration’, from governments, migrant and refugee organisations, NGOs, faith groups, academics and business. The ‘Declaration of The Hague on the Future of Refugee and Migration Policy’ was delivered and launched on 22nd November 2002 at the Peace Palace in The Hague and was endorsed by leading international figures, including then UN Secretary-General Mr. Kofi Annan.

The 21 principles of the Declaration provided a solid assessment of the driving issues in migration and refugee policy, but further action was necessary to explore new ways of addressing these.

To download a PDF copy of the Declaration, click on the language of your choice:

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Statement by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan at the launch of the Declaration of The Hague on the Future of Refugee and Migration Policy.

The Club of The Hague

In order to execute this ambition a high level multidisciplinary think tank, The Club of The Hague was founded in 2003 and a number of specific initiatives were developed to engage the financial sector, regional parties, big cities, the business community and other societal groups and governments, to take a more active role in the shaping of migration and refugee policy.

In March 2005 the initiative was given a stronger institutional and legal footing through the establishment of the Foundation ‘The Hague Process on Refugees and Migration’. This allowed for further professionalization of the activities conducted under the auspices of The Club of The Hague.

In 2009-10, following the advice from its donors and advisory council, the ‘Club of The Hague’, THP developed a new strategy and approach to reflect developments in the field of migration.

New Focus

The 2010-2015 Strategic Plan included a more focused short-to-medium-term Action Plan targeting priorities identified from past strengths of THP, as well as current key areas of impact in the field of migration and development. THP contributed to global initiatives such as the Global Forum on Migration and Development, the United Nations High-Level Dialogue on Migration and Development and the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Migration. The organisation developed a specific focus on the nexus of migration/refugees and urbanisation in the context of globalisation and from the perspective of businesses and local government.

Global Hearing on Refugees and Migration

From 2011 – 2012 THP conducted a series of Expert Consultations for Business and Cities on Migration and Urbanisation in cities around the world and organised a Global Hearing on Refugees and Migration in 2012 where over 200 individuals from over 60 states came together at the Peace Palace to discuss pressing issues in refugee and migration policies and outline a strategy for the coming decade.

New Direction: Business, Cities & Migration

As a direct result of the outcomes and recommendations of the 2012 Global Hearing, THP has a new thematic focus and has centered its efforts on addressing the role of two key stakeholders in addressing migration and refugee challenges; the private sector and cities.