Winter 2017 Newsletter - Director Message

BTI Director Ioannis Kakadiaris

BTI Director Ioannis Kakadiaris

Welcome to the inaugural newsletter issue of the Borders, Trade, and Immigration (BTI) Institute at the University of Houston!
Formerly known as the Center for Borders, Trade, and Immigration Research, the BTI Institute is a DHS Center of Excellence that conducts research and provides education materials to enhance the nation’s ability to secure our borders, facilitate legitimate trade and travel, and ensure the integrity of our immigration policies. Borders in the 21st century are more than lines delineating sovereign domains – they also encompass the transnational flows of people and goods that traverse these lines of demarcation. We view security and facilitation as two sides of the same coin, and they are both integral to our approach.

Our goal for this newsletter is simple: To invite you to take a closer look at the many activities in which our multi-disciplinary team of national and international experts engage. We are proud to be a resource for the homeland security enterprise (HSE). With HSE end users in mind, we work to bring together public and private sectors, generate basic and applied research in technologies and policies, and provide HSE- driven education and workforce development programs. This newsletter will offer news and updates about the BTI portfolio of projects, as well as information and deadlines about upcoming events of interest.

We are excited to have 13 projects fully underway, organized under four main thrusts: transnational flows of people, transnational flows of goods, homeland security enterprise education, and homeland security enterprise workforce development. They include projects that develop technologies to monitor and facilitate the transnational flows of people, and policies that examine the practices of transnational crime organizations.  We are also developing technologies for the Ports of the Future to facilitate transnational flows of goods, as well as policies on trade compliance. Education and workforce development projects  nclude project-based STEM learning and homeland security symposia.

More importantly, we hope that this newsletter will inspire you to get involved and become a contributing member of our community. We seek opportunities to collaborate with industrial and public sector partners in the transition and dissemination of technology and policy products. If you have any questions or would like to know more about our institute, I encourage you to contact us at