Immigration law beyond borders: Externalizing and internalizing border controls in an era of securitization

Cecilia Menjívar

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

145 Scopus citations


This review focuses on the enactment of borders beyond the physical demarcation of the nation, to encompass the entire migratory process, with particular attention to practices in the United States and the European Union. It addresses the twin processes of the externalization (outsourcing) and internalization (insourcing) of border controls, both of which rest on the securitization of migration management. Outsourcing involves a series of extraterritorial activities in sending and in transit countries at the request of the more powerful receiving state. Insourcing includes the policing of immigrants and enforcement controls within the interior, such as the detection, detention, and deportation of immigrants. This multipronged strategy that extends beyond the edges of a territory highlights the spaciality of enforcement and the buttressing of power imbalances between sending countries, on one hand, and transit and receiving countries, on the other, as well as inequalities within national territories with respect to legal status.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)353-369
Number of pages17
JournalAnnual Review of Law and Social Science
StatePublished - Nov 3 2014


  • Borders
  • Enforcement
  • Immigration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Law


Dive into the research topics of 'Immigration law beyond borders: Externalizing and internalizing border controls in an era of securitization'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this