This website is dedicated to making the case for open borders. The term “open borders” is used to describe a world where there is a strong presumption in favor of allowing people to migrate and where this presumption can be overridden or curtailed only under exceptional circumstances.
The goal of the website is to make the arguments for open borders, and also to explicitly discuss many arguments against open borders, evaluate their validity, and determine ways to tackle the objections.
The site draws on available arguments and discussions by leading economists, politicians and thinkers, and organizes them by topic so that interested readers can use them to be informed of multiple perspectives.
It is important to note that currently open borders is a theoretical topic, not operationalized fully in any country, developed or developing, and no country seems keen to implement it. Some countries even have restrictions or discourage migrations between regions within the country, and concepts like Gross World Product are not in the purview of any global organization that has the authority to legislate measures to improve them. However, the site assumes that discussion on “open borders” will enable interested people to understand the issues involved and suggest possible paths for the future.
The Open Borders website is not a political lobbying group or organization and does not have formal ties with any such organization, although the site pages may contain discussion and evaluation of specific immigration law proposals and individual bloggers may express their own support or disapproval of specific aspects of such legislation. In case of guest blog posts by a person employed or paid by a lobbying group, the information will be clearly and explicitly disclosed. As of now, we have not published any pieces written by lobbyists. Our guest bloggers so far have included academics, people working at think tanks, undergraduate and graduate students, and people employed in the for-profit non-academic world in jobs unrelated to politics or policy.
Site content versus blog posts
The website has site content pages as well as blog posts. When describing it to others, it is best to describe it as a blog-cum-website or a blog-cum-informational resource.
- Site content pages have URLS that read openborders.info/pagename. They do not have explicit publication dates or explicit authorship. Many of these entries were originally written by Vipul Naik, but in a third-person style. Some of the pages may have later been edited by one of the other major site contributors (the current list of site contributors includes Nathan Smith, John Lee, Chris Hendrix, and Naik). The pages may be changed at any time, both in terms of content and structure. Comments are disabled for site content pages.
- Blog posts have URLs that read openborders.info/blog/pagename. They come with a clearly stated publication date and explicit authorship information at the top of the post. Blog posts are not usually updated after the stated publication date, except for explicitly identified updates as well as broken link fixes or minor spelling/grammar fixes. New blog posts are added frequently, with the frequency varying from several a day to one a week. Recent posts can be accessed in reverse chronological order from the site’s front page openborders.info. Comments are enabled for all blog posts (with the exception of the blog post you’re reading right now). For more information, see our page on basic information about blog posts and comments policy.
Getting started on the site content
As of now, the references in the website largely focus on immigration to the United States, because that is the country for which most published material and resources are available. But most of the arguments are fairly general and country-independent. In a world with open borders, the majority of migration flows will be from less developed to more developed countries, hence many of the arguments for and against open borders implicitly assume that this is the sort of migration that is being discussed.
There is a lot of content on this site. If you’re just starting out on the site, I suggest you start by reading these two pages:
- The case for open borders lays out the basics of the case.
- Objections lays out the structure of the key objections to open borders.
The sitemap has a complete list of site pages with information on the site structure. You can also use the menus above and on the right for navigation, but the sitemap has the advantage that you can see the complete list of site pages as plain text. The sitemap does not include blog entries, which can be accessed from the homepage or by browsing the blog archives.
Our collection of resources outside of this website
You might want to check out our secondary menu, which includes links to:
- Reading: Includes pro-open borders reading list, anti-open borders reading list, and miscellaneous reading list.
- Web resources:
Behind the curtain
For more on how and why the site was created, read the site story.