National Center for Border Security and Immigration

National Center for Border Security and Immigration

Enhancing long-term understanding of immigration determinants and dynamics.


BORDERS is dedicated to developing innovative techniques, proficient processes and effective policies to help meet the challenges of border security and immigration, with a specific focus on screening and deception detection.

As a Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence, Emeritus, our work helps to protect our nation’s borders, foster international trade and enhance in-depth understanding of issues surrounding immigration—impacting organizations including U.S. Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the U.S. Coast Guard and the Transportation Security Administration.


Research Highlight: AVATAR

The Automated Virtual Agent for Truth Assessments in Real-Time—or AVATAR—is a deception-detection technology created by researchers at the University of Arizona. AVATAR analyzes facial expressions and measures nuanced voice, body and eye signals. The results of these analyses are then communicated to decision makers in real time, making screening processes more efficient and effective.

BORDERS Research

Immigration and border security are among society’s most pressing concerns. With new priorities arising every day, agencies have to think on their feet to develop and implement effective strategies. BORDERS is committed to solving these real-world challenges through outstanding research and data-driven decision making. Our research covers a wide range of relevant topics related to credibility assessment— including interviewing candidates for a job, discovering financial fraud, and insider threats.

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BORDERS provides support to students interested in working on border security and immigration. Each year, we sponsor approximately 20 undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students who benefit from hands-on research and education

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In support of our research mission, BORDERS publishes a wide range of technical reports, journal articles and other publications, including workplans and annual reports. Our faculty and student work has been featured in top journals and publications.

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The valuable work taking place within BORDERS relies on our network of passionate individuals. Meet our faculty, staff, students and alumni, as well as the BORDERS’ National Advisory Board.

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Contact Us

By Phone

520-621-4475 office

By Email

General Inquiries

By Mail

McClelland Hall 427
The University of Arizona
P.O. Box 210108
Tucson, AZ 85721-0108


Our People