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Migrants, Refugees, and Societies: World Development Report 2023 Launch

June 19, 2023 @ 4:30 pm - 6:00 pm EDT

Photo caption : 33 million people were affected or displaced by the rainfall and flooding that devastated Pakistan in September 2022. Here, an AKDN staff member surveys stranded communities to determine where healthcare camps should be set up. According to the World Bank’s World Development Report, climate change presents a growing and unprecedented threat to human societies by amplifying pre-existing patterns of movements, exacerbating socioeconomic disparity, and creating new risks to human development. Credit: AKDN / Insiya Syed

About 184 million people—2.3 percent of the world’s population—live outside of their country of nationality. Almost half of them are in low- and middle-income countries. With global economic imbalances, climate change, and other complex factors, migration will become increasingly necessary in the decades to come, with the potential to deepen development challenges. However, the authors of the World Bank’s 2023 World Development Report assert that if migration is managed well, it can result in prosperity and help to achieve the SDGs.

On June 19, join Aga Khan Foundation Canada and Cooperation Canada for an engaging discussion centered on the launch of the 2023 World Development Report. Join us to learn directly from the report’s 2023 Co-Director, Çağlar Özden, about the World Bank’s proposed framework to maximize the positive impact of global migration.

We will also be hosting a panel that will delve into:

  • Important considerations and lessons related to social and economic integration of migrants within new communities
  • The importance of partnerships between governments and civil society


Keynote Address

Çağlar Özden, Lead Economist, Development Economics, World Bank

A Turkish national and a professional migrant, Caglar received his undergraduate degrees in economics and industrial engineering from Cornell University and Ph.D. in economics from Stanford University. He is a fellow of IZA, CreAM and ERF. His research explores the nexus of globalization of product and labor markets, government policies and economic development. He has edited three books and published numerous papers in leading academic journals such as American Economic Review and the Economic Journal. His current research projects explore the determinants and patterns of global labor mobility, impacts of migrants on the destination labor market outcomes, linkages between migration, trade, and foreign direct investment flows, medical brain drain and linkages between ageing and global economic integration.


Kate Higgins, CEO Cooperation Canada

Kate recently joined Cooperation Canada as Chief Executive Officer. She is an accomplished leader and experienced manager, with over fifteen years of experience in international development, civil society, think tanks, and government. Before joining Cooperation Canada, Kate was the Deputy Executive Director of Oxfam Canada, where she led the organization’s work on strategy and communications and spearheaded several organizational change initiatives, in addition to serving as Interim Executive Director in 2020. Kate worked for CIVICUS, a global alliance of civil society organizations, where she led strategy development and the organization’s work on data, sustainable development, and citizen action. She has held senior policy and research roles at the North-South Institute and the Overseas Development Institute, leading work on chronic poverty, protracted conflict, women’s economic justice and international assistance and building several global, multi-stakeholder initiatives. Kate started her career at the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), working on the Indonesia and Papua New Guinea programs. She has lived and worked in Australia, Canada, Papua New Guinea, South Africa, Thailand, and Uganda and has undertaken missions in several other countries. Kate has degrees in economics and development studies from the University of Oxford and the University of Sydney.


Rema Jamous Imseis, UNHCR Representative in Canada

Ms. Rema Jamous Imseis is the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Representative to Canada. She formerly served as Deputy Director of the UNHCR Bureau for the Middle East and North Africa, covering operations in North Africa, Yemen, the Gulf Cooperation Council countries and Israel. Previously, she served as Head of the United Nations Regional Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in the Middle East and North Africa. She has been with the United Nations since 2003 and has held a variety of positions in political, legal and humanitarian affairs. Prior to joining the UN, she served as Legal Counsel to the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario and worked as a litigator in Toronto. Previous work experience includes consultancies and academic research in human rights, judicial independence and the rule of law.

Daniel Rubenson, Individual Researcher, Metaketa Researcher and Professor, Toronto Metropolitan University

More speakers to be announced.


Additional Information for Attendees

  • In-person / Virtual Ticket: When you register, please indicate your interest to attend in-person at the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat (199 Sussex Drive, Ottawa) or to attend online (Zoom) by selecting the relevant ticket option for each session.
  • Refreshments: In-person attendees are invited to stay after the session to network and enjoy light refreshments.

Don’t miss the opportunity to meet and greet our speakers in-person!


Register Today!


Questions? Please contact [email protected]





Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat
199 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, ON K1N 1K6 Canada


Aga Khan Foundation Canada
Cooperation Canada