About the Project
The Project on the Future of Borders explores the border closures that took place around the world starting in February 2020 as national governments attempted to prevent the spread of COVID-19. These border and travel restrictions were enacted on a scale unprecedented in human history. The project will culminate in a book titled When the World Closed its Doors: The Covid Pandemic and the Future of Border Control. The book will tell the story of how and why those decisions were made, examine the economic and human impacts of the border closures, and assess the lessons for border restrictions as a risk mitigation tool for external threats from pandemics to terrorism to illegal migration. It will argue that, while there were some successes, the pandemic accelerated two unfortunate trends—increased nationalism and the breakdown of international cooperation—that have harmed effective border management and global mobility.