Understanding international migration and especially forced migration is of increasing importance for development and stability at both national and global scales. Since the 1990s, the nexus of migration and development has been studied extensively. However, during the last two decades organized violence has emerged as a key factor in the relation between migration and development. In some cases, it can be clearly identified as the fueling factor for international migration processes (e.g., civil wars in Central America and the Middle East). Elsewhere for example, in transition countries it might have an extractive relation with migration (e.g., migration officials operating organized extortion against migrants and criminal networks of human trafficking). In arrival countries, organized violence appears as illicit employment networks, homegrown terrorist cells, or xenophobic aggression by political groups (e.g, in the United States and Germany). At the same time, these different articulations of violence and migration reflect development-related factors that shape their outcome. Sometimes organized violence is an outcome of lack of sustainable development or of armed conflicts over resources, political power, or socio-cultural influence; at others it is the cause of absent development or massive migration. The concept of organized violence offers a promising approach for understanding new migration patterns and development, yet one whose explanatory potential has not yet received adequate scholarly attention. As a category, it captures forms of social violence that are difficult to grasp with the conventional conceptual frameworks of organized crime, collective violence, and political violence. Given its importance for the Central and Northern American region as well as the Africa-Middle-East-Europe region, a comparative international research integrating the strengths of different regional contexts and academic communities is propitious. Therefore, this research project will compare and contrast forms of violence, focusing in particular on organized violence, and how these shape migration patterns and development. The research team consists of two institutional partners: Lateinamerika-Institut of Freie Universität Berlin and Ruhr-Universität Bochum, headed by Ludger Pries (RUB) and Stephanie Schütze (FU) as principal investigators. The two partner institutions will collaborate in this project with scholars from El Colegio de México and Universidad de Guadalajara in Mexico, Koç University and Orien-Institut Istanbul in Turkey, and the University of Illinois at Chicago in the United States.