RESEARCH STUDY ON COUNTERING BUSINESSS MODEL OF MIGRANTS SMUGGLERS IN PAKISTAN
NOTE: PLEASE DO NOT APPLY TO THIS POSITION DIRECTLY. FOR SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS, PLEASE REFER TO THE END OF THIS VACANCY ANNOUNCEMENT.
NATURE OF ASSISGNMENT
To carry out a qualitative research study on enhancing knowledge base on various aspects of migrant smugglers in Pakistan, particularly in Punjab Province, including business models employed by smugglers. The findings aim to provide key insights into human smuggling business models and practices from Pakistan and contribute to valuable evidence generation for future development interventions to disrupt and counter these models.
Irregular Migration is characterized by socioeconomic problems including low literacy rates and a lack of livelihood opportunities. Power crises, corruption, and macroeconomic and political instability in recent times have resulted in a decline in industry growth. This along with high levels of unemployment has contributed to migration ‘push factors’ for individuals. With an improvement of the economic situation in Pakistan and a strengthened middle class, praised in the international and national media, many still choose to migrate irregularly in hopes of a more positive outcome. Apart from economic push factors, migrants also face lack of access to reliable information on safe migration channels and often rely on informal channels which lead to ill-informed decision making. Enforcement and barriers to mobility especially to Europe have led migrants to continue relying on clandestine mechanisms to reach destinations abroad, even if this involves precarious methods. People who choose to migrate by these informal channels have given rise to a thriving market for migrant smugglers in Pakistan. These smuggling markets specifically attract unemployed youths mostly from rural and semi urban areas.
In order to tackle the issue of irregular migration, the National Assembly of Pakistan passed the Smuggling of Migrants Bill, 2018 which stipulates a minimum imprisonment of three years and a fine of up to half a million rupees to migrant smugglers. However, the challenging part remains in identifying these networks and dismantling their business apparatus.
Existing research into smuggling markets and practices have given rise to the term “business model” which points towards how smuggling operates like a business. The reason for this being treated as a business is due to the fact that to some extent it follows the same economic approaches as legitimate businesses which cater to investment and maximizing economic gains. It has also been figured out that migrant smugglers offer a variety of packages for migrants to be smuggled such as all-inclusive packages which serves transport from country of origin to country of intended destination while some provide services for a single part of the journey. Another interesting finding of a study by Khalid Koser points to how this approach has been taken to treat migrant smuggling as “a business” by explaining through which way the money flows in the business which includes how a migrant who intends to travel by illegal means, raises the money for the trip, how payments are made to smugglers and disbursed by them through different payment options, how smugglers profit and how the initial investment pays for migrants and their families. It is reported to be a fast growing and highly profitable business due to certain aspects such as people seeking to migrate for economic or other reasons is high and restrictions on authorized travel has increased the demand for irregular migration.
As per a recent report from UNODC, it is has been observed that these migrant smugglers operate in networks which can manage complex operations starting from the country of source till final destination, these networks, based on their area of operations, involves a variety of actors who have different roles such as organisers, guides, drivers, service providers etc. It has also been reported that there is no single business model used by migrant smugglers, therefore a key issue that needs enhanced understanding is the business models followed by the migrant smugglers in Pakistan and appropriate responses needs to be formulated in order to counter these models.
In order to dismantle this business of migrant smugglers, it is imperative to figure out the methods employed by smugglers in attracting potential migrants. Therefore, this study will aim to focus on different regions of Pakistan in general and Punjab Province in particular where migrant smuggling networks are active and formulate ways to gather much needed data by finding out how do the migrant smugglers run their business and to make specific recommendations in order to strengthen Government’s relevant institutions in dismantling this business.
The specific objectives of the study are as follows:
· To identify different regions of Pakistan in general and Punjab Province in particular where smuggling networks with links to international mafia are prevalent.
· To conduct a qualitative field research of potential migrants, returnees, ex-migrants and relevant government officials on the migrant smugglers’ organizational structure, business models and modes of financing.
· To determine the methodology used by smugglers in Pakistan for enticing and advertising their services to attract potential migrants.
· Add to the knowledge base of understanding dynamics of the smuggling markets and practices employed by smugglers in Pakistan in general and Punjab Province in particular.
· Draw conclusions and formulate specific recommendations to strengthen GOP’s relevant institutions to counter and dismantle the business model of migrant smugglers.
Specific tasks shall include:
· Produce a desk review on the smugglers business practices based on interviews conducted with migrants, returnees, ex-migrants and relevant government officials in different regions of Pakistan particularly in Punjab Province.
· Develop enhanced research methodology and instruments (in-depth interviews, focus groups, working groups, etc.) tailored to the scope of the research in different regions of Pakistan in general and Punjab Province in particular.
· Translate the developed research materials including the questionnaire and consent forms into the local language.
· Conduct field research in selected regions of Pakistan particularly Punjab Province.
· Make specific recommendations in order to strengthen Government’s relevant institutions in dismantling the business models of migrant smugglers.
· Submit a research report and finalize after incorporating comments from stakeholders.
· Publish 100 copies of the report.
Realistic delivery dates and details as to how the work must be delivered.
· The researcher should visit for an inception meeting with IOM staff in Islamabad within 1 week after signing of contract.
· The researcher is expected to initiate and complete the work within 45 days after signing of contract.
· The researcher is expected to provide update on the progress work after every 10 days.
· The draft research report should be submitted for review within 30 days after signing of contract.
· Submission of the final report – 15 days after submission of the draft.
MANAGEMENT AND SUPERVISION:
The researcher will directly report to IOM that will provide guidance, review and provide necessary endorsement during the course of the study.
RESEARCHER’S QUALIFICATIONS AND EXPERIENCE:
An individual consultant can submit proposals for this research.
· Master´s degree in Political or Social Sciences and/or International Relations or a related field from an accredited academic institution. Candidates with a PhD in Social Sciences will have an added advantage.
· At least 5 years of experience in academic research with expertise in the subject of human rights. Experience on migrant smuggling will have an added advantage. This experience should be proven in the technical proposal by including relevant documents.
· Demonstrated experience of conducting similar research studies.
· Sound experience in liaising with governmental and non-governmental organizations.
· Professional experience in policy analysis and formulation, analytical skills with ability to write and review technical documents/reports, conduct interviews as part of background research and draft research reports.
· Knowledge of migration issues in Pakistan.
· Excellent communication skills including fluency in written and spoken English and local languages.
SPECIFICATIONS FOR APPLICATION:
- Detailed CV highlighting previous experience.
- Brief Methodology with work plan
- All-inclusive daily consultancy rate
NOTE: Kindly mail the Detailed CV highlighting previous experience, brief Methodology with work plan and all-inclusive daily consultancy rate to IOM address:
IOM HR Department
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