I feel privileged to have contributed a chapter with Scott Watson to this excellent volume, edited by Catherine Dauvergne, the Research Handbook on the Politics and Law of Migration, which was published yesterday.
There are a number of amazing chapters by some of the leading scholars in migration, such as Yasmeen Abu-Laban, Efrat Arbel, Elspeth Guild, Jenna Hennebry, Leah Vosko and many more. In our chapter, we explore the nature of the controversies that arose during the negotiation of the Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, the impact of designing negotiations as a ‘hybrid forum’ to contain these controversies, and the ‘excess’ controversies that emerged outside of the official negotiation process that ultimately influenced final adoption of the agreement. To do so, we draw upon the literature in science and technology studies (STS) – in particular, actor-network theory (ANT) – to conceptualize and analyse the debate surrounding the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. Specifically, we adapt the concepts of ‘translation’, ‘knowledge controversy’, and ‘hybrid forum’ to examine the controversy that animates the global dialogue on migration. Building on these concepts from ANT, we explore some elements of the controversy surrounding the Global Compact to understand how the international cooperative framework, its text, and related concerns circulated across networks between laypersons, government representatives, and experts.