Ideaspace is designed for anyone with an active interest in exploring U.S. immigration policy and the possibility of bipartisan consensus as a basis for future legislation. Because this non-partisan site strives for a fresh and even-handed portrayal of powerful people and their ideas, it can help reveal where sufficient political energy is flowing to drive action and where there may be room for consensus and compromise between left and right.
Strategic Inquiry: What is Smart Border Technology and How Should it be Implemented?.
December 9, 2021 – By DW Gibson
Video & Transcript: Alan Bersin on Migration Management as Border Security.
December 7, 2021 – By DW Gibson
State of Play, next on the menu bar after Home, shows how Ideaspace is actively participating in the struggle to examine and reshape U.S. immigration policy. We group our contributions under the following categories:
Opportunities, a periodically updated tally of opportunities for bipartisan congressional action;
Strategic Inquires by Ideaspace staff into consequential issues (see, for instance, No. 6 on smart border technology) and;
Capitol Hill Briefings & Interviews with opinion leaders (see, for instance, No. 4 with former Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Alan Bersin).
After State of Play come three elements – Players, Themes and Analysis – that constitute the core of our site. Together they create an “inductive map” of the immigration debate. (“Inductive” is used here to describe a process that begins with specific data and works toward general insights.) We built the map up from information on each of the Players through the Themes they embrace to an integrative Analysis of the current politics of immigration.
- First, Players. The empirical starting point for our map is the information we present on these thirty Players. Ideaspace believes these are the individuals with the most power to reach and sway large or otherwise consequential audiences with their ideas and actions in the U.S. immigration policy sphere. Half of the Players are on the political left and half on the right. At the top of this Home page the Players are presented in a scrollable carousel arrayed from most liberal on the left to most conservative on the right. If you go to the Players page, you will see these individuals listed vertically in left and right columns with the most centrist individuals at the top ranging to the least centrist at the bottom. A click on the name or image of any Player will take you to a Profile for that person providing a brief biography and his or her ideas on U.S. immigration policy.
- Second, Themes. The Themes adopt a political perspective that is both national and parochial; they are presented in the voice of some U.S. citizens exhorting other U.S. citizens to accept their view and join them in action. Most of the Themes are broad, but some are narrow. The broad Themes are ordinarily distilled from a group of closely related Ideas expressed by multiple Players; such a Theme can be thought of as a home for a suite of similar and widely recurring Ideas. The narrow Themes fit a different pattern. They typically express an unusual thought that is asserted by only one or a few Players, but have the potential to recur far more widely and therefore deserve to stay visible in Ideaspace as a Theme.
- Third, Analysis. Intense polarization is the dominant reality, but some theoretical common ground and points of nascent consensus can be seen.
This inductive map is intended to provide a dynamic context for our national conversation on immigration policy. To support this conversation, the site offers several additional features:
Consensus presents a founder’s letter on this bedrock necessity of a functional democracy;
Narratives imagine a debate on immigration policy between a composite voice on the left and one on the right;
History summarizes the U.S. experience with immigration since the nation’s founding; and
Glossary defines important terms.
Comments submitted by users of the site are always welcome. Ideaspace strives to provide fair treatment of all Players and their Ideas, but recognizes errors or biases may nonetheless intrude. Please send to firstname.lastname@example.org your thoughts on how any information we present can be made more accurate.
In due course, Ideaspace plans to apply its inductive method to other essential topics that stir passion in the United States and are ripe for political action, such as climate change, racial equity and our electoral process.
Ideaspace® is a registered U.S. trademark owned by Ideaspace Project, Inc., an Ohio nonprofit corporation. This website is an example of the services it can deliver. The company is owned by Rick Taft, Founder and President, a retired Ohio business lawyer and local politician with a long-standing interest in the structure of public policy debate. The Editorial Director for Ideaspace is Jordan Heller, the Research Director is DW Gibson, and Communications Director is Ariel Miller. Website design is by Mallory Taylor Design.
All non-portrait photography is by Rick Taft.