Rhetoric and reality on the U.S.-Mexico border are often misaligned. In an effort to promote a more realistic and holistic approach to the border, the Mexico Institute focuses on issues of economic development and competitiveness; border security and citizen security; environmental sustainability; and quality of life in the border region.
Connect With Us
The border region is home to more than 80 million people in four U.S. and six Mexican states and extends nearly 2,000 miles from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean. Its combined annual GDP is approximately $3.8 trillion and the bulk of U.S.-Mexico trade passes through its many land crossings. The border region serves as a conduit and source of commerce, tourism, and student-exchange that is vital to both countries, and it is the site of intense binational integration and cooperation, especially on issues of shared importance, such as transportation infrastructure and the environment. Key law enforcement efforts to counter transnational crime occur in the border region, and the nature of border ecosystems, which ignore national boundaries, underscores the importance of meaningful cooperation between the two countries to protect shared natural resources and habitats.
Annual Building a Competitive U.S.-Mexico Border Conference
Each year, the Mexico Institute, along with the Border Trade Alliance, hosts its high-level "Building a Competitive U.S.-Mexico Border" Conference, which focuses on improving border management in order to strengthen the competitiveness of both the United States and Mexico. Our most recent conference, the sixth in our series, was held in June 2019.
State of the Border Report
Every few years, the Mexico Institute works with its research partners to author a comprehensive report on the state of border management and the U.S.-Mexico border region, focusing on four core areas: trade and competitiveness, security, sustainability, and quality of life. The report is based on the premise that, rather than consider each issue individually, the interdependent nature of topics like trade, security and sustainability demand the border be approached from a more holistic perspective.
Other Initiatives on Border Issues
U.S.-Mexico Regional Economic Competitiveness Forums 2014
In 2014, the Mexico Institute was pleased to partner with USAID Mexico, the Council of State Governments West, the U.S. Congressional Border Caucus, and the North American Research Partnership on the "U.S.-Mexico Regional Economic Competitiveness Forums 2014." This initiative brought together key business, government, and other stakeholders to discuss the future of the U.S.-Mexico border economy with particular emphasis on four crossborder regions. Discussion topics included developments, best practices and innovations in the integration of the ports of entry (infrastructure, investment, investment and innovation), border management, and the state of the regional economy.
Awards for U.S.-Mexico Cross-Border Cooperation
In 2011, the Mexico Institute, with the Border Research Partnership, launched an awards program recognizing extraordinary experiences of binational cooperation in several fields, including public safety, transportation planning, environmental stewardship, education, health, and the arts, among others. For more information on the awards, please visit the award’s bilingual websites at www.wilsoncenter.org/borderawards and http://www.colef.mx/premioinnovacion/