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In this paper, we summarize our recent results on nonlinear polarization- and transverse-mode dynamics of vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs) induced by optical injection (OI) or current modulation. Due to the surface emission and cylindrical symmetry, VCSELs lack strong polarization anisotropy and may undergo polarization switching (PS). Furthermore, VCSELs may emit light in multiple transverse modes. This provides new features to the rich nonlinear dynamics induced in VCSELs by an external perturbation. We demonstrate for the case of orthogonal OI that new Hopf bifurcation on a two-polarization-mode solution delimits the injection locking (IL) region and that PS and IL of first-order transverse mode lead to a new resonance tongue for large positive detunings. Similarly, the underlying polarization-mode competition leads to chaotic-like behavior in case of gain switching and the presence of two transverse modes additionally reduces the possibility of regular dynamics.