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Andrew Selee

Former Executive Vice President and Senior Advisor to the Mexico Institute

Professional affiliation

President, Migration Policy Institute

Full Biography

Andrew Selee was named Executive Vice President of the Wilson Center in January 2014. Prior to this position, Selee was the Wilson Center’s Vice President for Programs.  He was the founding Director the Center’s Mexico Institute from 2003-12.  He is an adjunct professor of Government at Johns Hopkins University and of International Affairs at George Washington University and has been a visiting professor at El Colegio de Mexico.

After seventeen years at the Wilson Center, Selee will be joining the Migration Policy Institute in August as its next president.

His most recent publications are What Should Think Tanks Do? A Strategic Guide for Policy Impact (Stanford University Press, 2013), Mexico and the United States: The Politics of Partnership (Lynne Rienner, 2013), and Mexico's Democratic Challenges (Stanford University Press/Woodrow Wilson Center Press, 2010). He has written extensively on U.S.-Mexico relations, Mexican politics, U.S. immigration policy, organized crime, and democracy in Latin America.

His public opinion articles have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Dallas Morning News, Houston Chronicle, Americas Quarterly, and other media, and he writes a biweekly column in the Mexican newspaper El Universal.  He is interviewed frequently in the press, including PBS, NBC, CBS, Fox News, NPR, BBC, New York Times, Washington Post,Wall Street Journal, and The Economist.

Selee is co-director of the Regional Migration Study Group, convened by the Migration Policy Institute and the Wilson Center, and was a member of Council on Foreign Relations' Task Force on Immigration.  He is a long-time volunteer of the YMCA and  was a member of the YMCA of the USA’s National Board and International Committee. 

Prior to joining the Wilson Center as a program associate in the Latin American Program in 2000, he was a professional staffer in the U.S. House of Representatives and worked for five years with the YMCA of Baja California in Tijuana, Mexico, helping to start a community center and a home for migrant youth.


Ph.D. in Policy Studies from the University of Maryland; M.A. in Latin American Studies from the University of California, San Diego; B.A. in Latin American Studies (Phi Beta Kappa) from Washington University in St. Louis.

Major Publications

  • What Should Think Tanks Do? A Strategic Guide for Policy Impact (Stanford University Press, 2013);
  • Mexico and the United States: The Politics of Partnership (Lynne Rienner, 2013, co-edited with Peter H. Smith);
  • Decentralization, Democratization, and Informal Power in Mexico (Penn State University Press, 2011)
  • Mexico's Democratic Challenges (co-editor, Wilson Center Press/Stanford University Press, 2010);
  • Shared Responsibility: U.S.-Mexico Policy Options for Confronting Organized Crime (co-editor with Eric L. Olson and David A. Shirk, Wilson Center, 2010);
  • The United States and Mexico: More than Neighbors (co-author with Chris Wilson and Katie Putnam, Wilson Center, 2010);
  • Context Matters: Latino Immigrant Civic and Political Participation in Nine Cities (co-author with Xochitl Bada, Jonathan Fox, and Robert Donnelly, Wilson Center, 2010);
  • Participatory Innovation and Representative Democracy in Latin America (co-editor with Enrique Peruzzotti, Wilson Center Press/John Hopkins University Press, 2009).