Concentrated border enforcement

Concentrated border enforcement is the term used for US border enforcement strategy introduced in the 1990s on the US-Mexican border which resulted in the spatial redistribution of unauthorised entry attempts and raised the cost and physical risks associated with it (Cornelisu 2001). Wayne A. Cornelius in his seminal article highlights that concentration of border enforcement produced spatial redistribution and increased the danger and risk but this was not translated into a deterrence. „The spatial redistribution of migrants deaths since 1994 is an impressive demonstration of the Border Patrol’s capacity to herd unauthorized border-crossers into increasingly inhospitable and dangerous areas. But higher physical risk has not translated into a strong deterrent effect“ (Cornelius 2001: 675). His research shows that there is „no evidence that apprehended migrants already at the border are becoming so discouraged that they are returning to their home countries. In fact, most migrants are not ‘giving up’ after their first, second, third, fourth, or even eleventh apprehension“ (Cornelisu 2001: 677).


Cornelius, Wayne A. 2001. “Death at the Border. Efficacy and Unintended Consequences of US Immigration Control Policy”. Population and Development Review 27(4): 661-685.