All posts by mmillard

June 2 2022: RRN Research Digest

The RRN Research Digest provides a synopsis of recent research on refugee and forced migration issues from entities associated with the RRN and others.

You can download the digest in PDF format here: RRN Research Digest No. 125


Abdelaaty, L. (2022). Do Rights Violations Deter Refugees, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies. Do crackdowns by destination countries deter refugees? Much of the existing literature conflates containment measures (forcibly restricting refugees in their home region or country) and deterrence policies (discouraging refugees by making the destination appear less attractive). In addition, empirical studies have focused almost exclusively on Western countries and analyzed the effects of acceptance rates or policy reforms on the number of asylum applications lodged. In contrast, this paper examines whether rights violations deter asylum-seekers and refugees by leveraging a global dataset drawn from reports by the US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants. The author finds that deportation, detention, and encampment are not associated with decreases in asylum applications or refugee arrivals and may be associated with increases in them in some cases. While reduced access to the labour market may deter minimal numbers of asylum-seekers and refugees, there are other sound reasons for destination countries to eschew restrictive employment policies (50 free eprints)

Danisi, C., Dustin, M., Ferreira, N., Held, N., and Querton, C. (eds.). (2022). Sexuality, Gender and Asylum: Refugees at a Crossroads, Research Topic in Frontiers in Human Dynamics. In recent years there has been increasing research interest in SOGI asylum in Europe and beyond. Scholars from various disciplines have explored how SOGI claims are often treated in an inappropriate and stereotyped way with repercussions concerning claimants’ proof of membership of a particular social group (PSG), risk of persecution and credibility. Yet, despite this growing body of literature on SOGI asylum, it is clear that many theoretical, geographical and practical challenges and gaps remain. This editorial brings together interdisciplinary and original contributions that push the boundaries of our knowledge and understanding of SOGI asylum. Combined, these pieces contribute to the existing literature and current debates on SOGI asylum, advancing theoretical and policy debates on SOGI asylum.

(2022). Special issue: Refuge in Pandemic Times. Refuge : Canada’s Journal on Refugees, 38(1). This special issue celebrates the 40th anniversary of Refuge: One of the longest-standing bilingual, open access, peer-reviewed journals in the field of forced migration. It also brings together a rich compilation of pieces addressing forced migration, refugeeness, protection and resettlement under COVID-19.

Milner, J., Alio, M., & Gardi, R. (2022). Meaningful Refugee Participation: An Emerging Norm in the Global Refugee RegimeRefugee Survey Quarterly. Despite growing attention since 2016, the authors argue that meaningful refugee participation in the governance of the global refugee regime is not yet an established norm. By drawing on the norm lifecycle framework developed by Finnemore and Sikkink and an analysis of recent initiatives, the authors argue instead that meaningful refugee participation is an emerging norm that has the potential to become the standard of appropriate behaviour in global decision-making fora. Despite this progress, they argue that the pursuit of differentiated approaches to refugee participation by norm entrepreneurs may constrain efforts to advance the norm. By examining efforts by States, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and refugee-led initiatives in recent years, the authors seek to highlight the similarities and differences between these initiatives and the extent to which they meet the threshold for norm emergence. While meaningful refugee participation is not yet a norm in the global refugee regime, this research argues that a deeper understanding of its steady emergence holds important lessons for future research, policy, and practice.

Lems, A. (2022). Being-Here: Placemaking in a World of Movement (Vol. 35). Berghahn Books. Exploring the lifeworlds of Halima, Omar and Mohamed, three middle-aged Somalis living in Melbourne, Australia, the author discusses the interrelated meanings of emplacement and displacement as experienced in people’s everyday lives. Through their experiences of displacement and placemaking, Being-Here examines the figure of the refugee as a metaphor for societal alienation and estrangement and moves anthropological theory towards a new understanding of the crucial existential links between Sein (Being) and Da (Here). The introduction of the volume can be read here

Kolmes, S. A., Kolmes, S. K., & Lin, P. H. (2022). What Lies Ahead: How Aid for Climate Refugees Must Focus on Human Rights and Human HealthEnvironment: Science and Policy for Sustainable Development, 64(3), 7-16. This article analyzes two distinct perspectives for determining whether a person fleeing their country can be granted “climate refugee” status due to the negative environmental impacts on their country of climate change. One perspective comes from the UN Human Rights Committee, which states that an intermediate risk of serious harm must be present to prevent the return of a person seeking protection related to climate. The second perspective is from the pastoral guidelines of the Vatican’s Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, which emphasizes the obligation to protect migrants when a climate crisis threatens the conditions necessary for a dignified life. Finally, the article explores the impact each approach has on people seeking protection.


The Future of Nationality in the Pacific: Preventing Statelessness and Nationality Loss in the context of Climate Change by Michelle Foster, Nicola Hard, Hélène Lambert and Jane McAdam, UNSW, Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law, Peter McMullin Centre on Statelessness, University of Melbourne, and the University of Technology Sydney, May 2022. This ground-breaking new report provides the first in-depth look at the legal risks of statelessness and nationality loss in the Pacific as climate change hits. The report finds that under current laws, some Pacific Islanders who move abroad permanently risk losing their citizenship or the ability to pass it on to their children. Entitlements such as voting or standing for office play a powerful role in ongoing connection to home, even for citizens living elsewhere.

Digital Health Credentials and COVID-19: Can Vaccine and Testing Requirements Restart Global Mobility? by  Lawrence Huang, Migration Policy Institute (MPI), April 2022. This report examines the implications of digital health credentials for international travel and domestic access to services and venues. It explores what using these credentials could mean for specific mobile groups, including tourists and business travellers, labour migrants, asylum seekers and refugees, unauthorized migrants and students. It also offers policy recommendations to facilitate mobility and minimize risks for people on the move, along with key principles that should underpin long-term planning around digital credentials.

COVID-19 and the State of Global Mobility in 2021, by Meghan Benton, Samuel Davidoff-Gore, Jeanne Batalova, Lawrence Huang & Jie Zong, Migration Policy Institute (MPI), May 10, 2022. This report examines trends during the second year of the pandemic across various areas, including changes in restrictions, human movements and policy innovation. It comes ahead of the first International Migration Review Forum (17-20 May), where the UN Member States will gather to assess progress in implementing the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration.

From Fear to Solidarity: The Difficulty in Shifting Public Narratives about Refugees by Natalia Banulescu-Bogdan, Migration Policy Institute (MPI), May 4, 2022. This report examines the narratives that emerge in communities welcoming forced migrants and two types of interventions that address negative narratives: information campaigns and ‘contact-building’ initiatives that aim to build connections between refugees and host communities. The report concludes that efforts to address negative narratives head-on may not work. Information campaigns that seek to change people’s minds about refugees may fall flat or even backfire, given that beliefs are inextricably tied to social cues and identity, and thus are resistant to change. Instead, facilitating positive contact between refugees and other members of society may be a more promising approach to reduce prejudice and foster cooperation and trust, though the quality and context of the contact are critical determinants of success.

International Migration Review Forum (IMRF) 2022: Implementation and the Road Ahead for the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly, and Regular Migration (GCM), Center for Migration Studies, May 24, 2022. When the GCM was adopted in 2018, it stipulated that a high-level meeting take place every four years to discuss progress made, new challenges, and the road ahead. This meeting took place for the first time since the adoption of the GCM from May 16-20, at United Nations (UN) Headquarters in New York. The forum brought together member states, stakeholders, civil society, local governments, and migrants. It concluded with the adoption of the IMRF Progress Declaration, which documents progress made on the implementation of the GCM and pledges future international cooperation to ensure that the human rights, dignity, and safety of migrants are upheld.

Global Detention Project (GDP) Annual Report: Global Tool, Local Impact, May 2022. When the GDP began drafting this Annual Report, Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine had already spurred the largest refugee emergency in Europe since World War II. We looked back on 2021—a year during which the COVID-19 pandemic, cruel border control practices, and burgeoning conflicts from Yemen to Myanmar to Afghanistan all had devastating impacts on migrants and refugees. It was hard to imagine that yet another calamity awaited around the corner that would upend our collective sense of security and well-being, and create dramatic new challenges in our efforts to promote the human rights of detained non-citizens. In this Annual Report, the GDP has sought to engage these challenges proactively, effectively, and in partnership with allies and advocates at all levels, from local advocacy groups to networks spread across the international community. 

Immigration Detention Amidst War: The Case of Ukraine’s Volyn Detention Centre, A Global Detention Project (GDP) Special Report, April 29, 2022. The GDP has closely monitored and reported on the plight of migrants and asylum seekers trapped in detention centres inside war-torn Ukraine, working in collaboration with Human Rights Watch and other civil society partners, and with journalism contacts across Europe. Although members of the European Parliament called for EU assistance for the detainees, many remain detained in Ukraine, while some have been re-detained in Poland. Learn more from this special report about the ongoing saga of these detainees.  


“And So Advocacy Became Healing”: A GDP Q&A with Abdul Aziz Muhamat, Global Detention Project, April 28, 2022. In 2013, Abdul Aziz Muhamat’s father put him on a flight departing Sudan when conflict threatened the family. His journey to freedom and safety was cut short when the Australian navy intercepted the boat he had boarded from Indonesia to Australia and sent him to Manus Island, Papua New Guinea. Aziz languished for nearly six years on Manus, where he was an indefatigable advocate for those trapped in Australia’s offshore detention system. Today, Aziz lives in Switzerland, having been granted asylum after receiving Geneva’s prestigious Martin Ennals Award for Human Rights Defenders in 2019. In 2021, Aziz joined the GDP as a research and advocacy fellow. Executive Director Michael Flynn spoke to Aziz about his experiences, the challenges he sees in making advocacy more effective, and his plans for the future. 

Preventing Statelessness and Nationality Loss in the context of Climate Change by Michelle Foster, Nicola Hard, Hélène Lambert and Jane McAdam, European Network on Statelessness, May 19, 2022. This week, a pioneering report was launched that presents the first in-depth analysis of the legal risks of statelessness and nationality loss in the context of climate change in the Pacific. In this blog, the authors present a summary of its findings and recommendations for Pacific Island Countries and Territories to protect their people from the risks of statelessness now and into the future, whatever it holds.

The ‘Biloela family’ are going home – but what will Labor do with thousands of other asylum seekers in limbo in Australia? By Mary Anne Kenny, The Conversation, May 27, 2022. The long-running case of the “Biloela family” has taken a step forward, after the new Australian Labor government confirmed they would be allowed to return home to Queensland. But their final immigration status is still outstanding. It’s yet to be seen if the immigration minister will choose to exercise their discretion to grant them permanent visas.


[Podcast] Is it possible to predict future forced displacement? Fixing Aid Podcast, The New Humanitarian, May 5, 2022. In this episode of Fixing Aid, host Alae Ismail explores if aid responses could be improved if future forced displacement trends were more accurately predicted.

[Podcast] The Refuge: A CYRRC Podcast: The Child and Youth Refugee Research Coalition. The Refuge Podcast brings together youth with refugee experience, academics, and community partners to discuss key issues affecting refugee children, youth, and families in Canada and beyond.

May 12 2022: RRN Research Digest

The RRN Research Digest provides a synopsis of recent research on refugee and forced migration issues from entities associated with the RRN and others.

You can download the digest in PDF format here: RRN Research Digest No. 124


[open access] Special Issue: Maguire, M. (Ed.). (2021). Twentieth Century Histories of Civic Society Responses to Crises of Displacement. Displaced Voices: A Journal of Archives, Migration and Cultural Heritage, 2(1). This special issue of displaced voices marks the 70th anniversary of the UK Refugee Council. The articles in this issue take up the theme of voluntary organizations that support refugees, from the local to the national, interrogating how volunteer and community work at various scales can help refugees, build understanding and solidarity, and develop connections between historically disparate refugee arrivals. This issue raises new questions about what it means to organize for refugees and our roles and responsibilities.

[open access] Pacifico, A. P. (2022). A Network Society Communicative Model for Optimising the Refugee Status Determination System. E-book. The book aims to analyze the Refugee Status Determination (RSD) to locate the reader on the development of the theme, the forms and actors responsible for its application, and, in the last chapter, to present suggestions for improving the RSD system developed around the world. In addition, the text provides several elements that mark these 70 years of development of the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees while touching on sensitive issues.

Krause, U. (2021). Difficult Life in a Refugee Camp: Gender, Violence, and Coping in Uganda. Cambridge University Press. Although refugee camps are established to accommodate, protect, and assist those fleeing from violent conflict and persecution, life often remains difficult there. Building on empirical research with refugees in a Ugandan camp, the author offers nuanced insights into violence, humanitarian protection, gender relations, and coping of refugees who mainly escaped the conflicts in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. This book explores how the risks of gender-based violence against women and men persist despite and partly due to their settlement in the camp and the system established there. It reflects on modes and shortcomings of humanitarian protection, changes in gender relations, and strategies that the women and men use to cope with insecurities, everyday struggles, and structural problems occurring across different levels and temporalities.

Walsh, M., Due, C., & Ziersch, A. (2022). “More Important than COVID-19”: Temporary Visas and Compounding Vulnerabilities for Health and Well-Being from the COVID-19 Pandemic for Refugees and Asylum Seekers in AustraliaRefuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees38(1), 11–26. Refugees and asylum seekers on temporary visas typically experience interacting issues related to employment, financial precarity, and poor health and well-being. This research aimed to explore whether the social impacts of COVID-19 exacerbated these issues. Interviews were conducted before and during the COVID-19 pandemic with 15 refugees and asylum seekers living in South Australia on temporary visas. The authors found that COVID-19 led to adverse health and other outcomes such as employment challenges. The findings emphasize the importance of immigration and welfare policy.

[open access] Anderson, M. M., & Soennecken, D. (2022). Locating the Concept of Vulnerability in Canada’s Refugee Policies at Home and Abroad. Laws11(2). How is the concept of “vulnerability” employed in Canadian immigration law? This article presents findings from research conducted as part of the VULNER project (2019–23). The authors analyze how vulnerability is operationalized in Canada’s inland refugee (or asylum) determination procedures compared to its overseas resettlement program by first discussing some general principles, followed by examining the treatment of women and LGBTQI+ individuals seeking protection. The authors demonstrate that legal-bureaucratic logics have constructed two very heterogeneous worlds of vulnerability that may reproduce and exacerbate vulnerabilities rather than create a more inclusive, equitable protection regime in law, policy, and practice.

[open access] Purkey, A. (2022). Vulnerability and the Quest for Protection: A Review of Canadian Migration Case Law. Laws, 11(2). Drawing on data from over 750 cases, primarily from the Immigration and Refugee Board and the Federal Court of Canada, this study sought to examine how the concept of vulnerability is used by both decision-makers and parties to cases involving migrants seeking legal status and various forms of protection under national or international law in Canad

[open access] Stirling Cameron, E., Ramos, H., Aston, M. et al. (2021). “COVID affected us all:” the birth and postnatal health experiences of resettled Syrian refugee women during COVID-19 in Canada. BMC Reproductive Health, 18(256). This article examined the lived experiences of postpartum Syrian refugee women who gave birth during the COVID-19 pandemic in Nova Scotia, Canada. This qualitative paper sought to understand how the pandemic impacted women’s access to healthcare and social support during and after birth. Women experienced complicated healthcare interactions, including socially and physically isolated deliveries, challenges accessing in-person interpreters, and cancelled or unavailable in-home services. In addition, increased childcare responsibilities and limited informal support due to pandemic restrictions left women feeling overwhelmed and exhausted.


Report: Pushed into the Shadows: Mexico’s Reception of Haitian Migrants by Yael Schacher & Rachel Schmidtke, Refugees International. April 28, 2022. Mexico’s response to Haitians seeking safety has been chaotic, neglectful, and discriminatory. A Refugees International team spoke with Haitian men and women about their experiences finding safety in Mexico and throughout the hemisphere—and recommended a new approach.

Report: “I’m a Prisoner Here”: Biden Administration Policies Lock Up Asylum Seekers, Human Rights First. April 21, 2022. The Biden administration has detained tens of thousands of asylum seekers in violation of the UN Refugee Convention. The 1951 UN Refugee Convention states that signatory nations “shall not impose penalties, on account of their illegal entry or presence, on refugees… provided they present themselves without delay.” However, a close examination of the cases of 270 asylum seekers and immigrants revealed a pattern of detention, even for asylum seekers from countries where human violations are well documented. Information from these cases comes from dozens of immigration attorneys and interviews with asylees in detention. The United States has the most extensive immigration detention system in the world.

Report: After the Coup: Burkina Faso’s Humanitarian and Displacement Crisis by Alexandra Lamarche and Arden Bentley, Refugees International. April 21, 2022. Burkina Faso’s humanitarian emergency is getting worse. A longer-than-usual dry season and a worsening global grain shortage amid the Russia-Ukraine conflict—where more than a third of the country’s grains are imported—make action more urgent than ever.

News and Blog Posts

Life as death: How Afghan refugees aren’t offered real solutions by Nergis Canefe, Eurozine. 9 February 2022. More than half a million Afghans were displaced in 2021, adding to many more forced to flee over decades of uninterrupted violence. Unfortunately, offers to accommodate Afghanistan’s ‘living dead’ are often conditional on vague definitions of neediness. The author argues that there is a tendency in transitional justice efforts to contain the discussion of the local within the religious and cultural parameters in the Global South, thus engaging only with a ‘static local’, as interpreted by certain local stakeholders. Instead, we must pay attention to a ‘dynamic local’ where societal norms evolve. Here, realities on the ground are shaped by shifting power dynamics, local hierarchies and inequalities between actors, and histories of statehood.

From Detention to E-Incarceration, Hope Border Institute, Frontera Dispatch. April 26, 2022. The Hope Border Institute calls for an end to the detention of immigrants and “e-carceration” through “Alternatives to Detention” (ATD) programs. These ATD methods allow immigrants to be tracked geographically via ankle bracelets, telephonic monitoring, and smartphone apps, which are nothing more than digital prisons and make immigrants feel like criminals. The Hope Border Institute also calls for protecting the privacy and security of migrants placed into ATD programs. Their data should not be mined by the government and for-profit companies working for US Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Nationality and Borders Act becomes law: five key changes explained by Alex Baltch, The Conversation. April 29, 2022. UK Parliament Passed the Nationality and Borders Act on April 26, 2022. The law presents the biggest overhaul to the asylum system in the United Kingdom in decades and seeks to deter illegal entry into the country. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Filippo Grandi warned that this law undermines established refugee protection laws and practices, including the 1951 Refugee Convention. The law creates two classes of asylum seekers based on how they arrive in the UK, those who come with a visa and those who do not. Asylum seekers who entered the country through irregular channels or overstayed their visas could face criminal charges and four years imprisonment.


Government Data in Migration Research: Advantages, Pitfalls, and Examples, CCIS & UCLA Center for the Study of International Migration. May 20, 2022, 3:00-5:00 PM ET. The panellists will discuss the use of US government data in migration research. It will begin with a discussion of the data available through the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) at Syracuse University, its processes, the epistemological issues with how government knowledge is produced, and various applications in both academic works and the real world. Furthermore, the panellists will discuss the trade-offs between survey and administrative data to study individual versus place-level immigration-related questions.

April 28 2022: RRN Research Digest

The RRN Research Digest provides a synopsis of recent research on refugee and forced migration issues from entities associated with the RRN and others.

You can download the digest in PDF format here: RRN Research Digest No. 123


New Issue: Winders, J. (Ed.). (2022). International Migration Review (IMR). Center for Migration Studies, 56(2). This summer 2022 edition of the IMR is thematically sorted into four sections. The first section examines immigrant wage gaps and labour market performance in Europe. The second discusses native-immigrant comparisons in neighbourhoods, workplaces, and education. The third section has articles about cultural attitudes, cultural frames, and immigrant incorporation. The fourth focuses on migration decisions, development, and networks. Lastly, this edition includes 11 book reviews, which are free to access.

[open access] Managing Mixed Migration. (2022). Yale Journal of International Law Online. This latest Symposium consists of eight essays that survey the law, politics, and history of mixed migration; reveal how states have interpreted the term; and showcase the promise and perils of migrant categorization. Above all, they tell a story about how governments rely on the mixed character of migrant flows and the mixed motives of people on the move to draw categories, force emigration, and constrain immigration.

[open access] Pacheco Pacifico, A. (2022) A Network Society Communicative Model for Optimising the Refugee Status Determination System. Paraiba State University Press. The book aims to analyze the Refugee Status Determination (RSD) to locate the reader on the development of the theme, the forms and actors responsible for its application, and present suggestions for improving the RSD system developed around the world. It suggests building a network society communicative model to optimize the RSD procedures, that is, a system that lacks standard procedures, internationally and regionally. Hence, this model would have all implementing partners (UNHCR, States, NGOs, and refugees) at the “round-table” to speak, be heard, and consider their reality, needs, and concerns.

[open access] Krause, U. (2022), The Powerful (Vagueness of) Numbers? (Non)Knowledge Production about Refugee Accommodation Quantifications in UNHCR’s Global Trends ReportsMigration and Society, 5 (1), 141–151. This article explores accommodation categories, quantifications, and local categorizations as presented in the Global Trends Reports published from 2003 to 2020. While the numbers display precise knowledge of refugees’ whereabouts, gaps prevail in the reports: accommodation categories remain undefined, calculations are partly unclear, and local recategorizations occur suddenly without explanation. This author argues that these issues produce nonknowledge, and that the reports’ continuous attention to accommodation data simulates refugees’ controllability and governability.

Fransen, S., & Haas, H. (2022). Trends and Patterns of Global Refugee MigrationPopulation and Development Review48(1), 97–128. This paper studies long-term trends and patterns in global refugee migration. The authors explored the intensity, spread, and distance of refugee migration at a global, regional, and country-level between 1951 and 2018. The analysis did not detect a long-term increase in the global intensity of refugee migration. Primarily depending on levels of conflict, refugee numbers have fluctuated at levels of between 0.1 and 0.3 percent of the world population. Apparent increases in numbers of the globally displaced are driven by the inclusion of populations and countries previously excluded from the data. While refugee populations continue to be concentrated in countries with low-to-medium income levels, the analysis reveals several geographic shifts in refugee migration. Refugees tend to come from a shrinking number of origin countries and move to an increasing variety of destination countries. This trend seems to reflect a concentration of recurrent conflict cycles in a relatively small number of countries and a parallel increase in the number of safe destinations.

Hovil, L., Maple, N. (2022). Local Integration: A Durable Solution in Need of Restoration? Refugee Survey Quarterly. The article examines ways in which states seek to evade local integration. It begins by investigating the multiple tactics used by wealthier governments to elude responsibility both at a national level and through their influence over global refugee responses. Next, it explores how countries hosting the greatest numbers of refugees, with a specific focus on Africa, have allowed significant numbers of refugees into their territory but have maintained a short-term approach that has blocked local integration as a durable solution. The authors argue that a mix of global, national, and local processes and forces have effectively conspired to diminish local integration as a durable solution, and the implications are profound.


The refuge Reports, Lebanese American University, April 2022. For twelve weeks, the Institute for Migration Studies is partnering with organizations worldwide to shed light on twelve refugee communities’ experiences of refuge and displacement to shift the focus back to the conflicts that no longer make the headlines. In partnership with the Global Research Network’s ‘War, Conflict and Global Migration Think Tank’, the third profile focuses on Burundi’s conflict that can be understood in the context of colonial and post-colonial historical migration patterns. In the fourth week, in partnership with the Department of Migration and Globalization, Danube University Krems is focused on displacement in Afghanistan and the current trends post-re-establishment of Taliban rule after ending a two-decade-long military presence in the country.

Ukraine — Internal Displacement Report — General Population Survey Round 3, International Organization for Migration (IOM). April 17, 2022. Between April 11 and 17, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) conducted the third round of a rapid representative assessment of the general population in Ukraine to gather insights into internal displacement and mobility flows and to assess local needs. This general population survey serves as a preliminary source to identify areas with high humanitarian needs and inform the targeting of response to assist the war-affected population. The geographical scope of the assessment covers the entire territory of Ukraine, all five macro-regions ( East, North, Centre, South, and the city of Kyiv), except the Crimean peninsula.


Outsourcing asylum seekers: the case of Rwanda and the UK by Cristiano d’Orsi, The Conversation. On April 4, 2022, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that Britain would relocate some asylum seekers arriving in the UK to Rwanda. The plan was condemned by the opposition and human rights groups such as Amnesty International. However, the UK has settled on Rwanda after earlier reports that it considered Albania and Ghana. In the light of the latest developments, Cristiano d’Orsi, an expert on the law and asylum seekers, provides insights into why Rwanda.

Biden administration rolls out plan for Ukrainian refugees by Maria Sacchetti, The Washington Post. April 21, 2022. President Biden pledged to accept as many as 100,000 Ukrainians – roughly 2 percent of the refugees – but the administration has not offered clear guidance on the process until now. The administration announced plans Thursday to expedite the arrival of Ukrainian refugees, creating a new system that will allow ordinary citizens and organizations such as churches to sponsor them. However, officials warned that Ukrainians attempting to cross via Mexico will be denied entry starting next week.

Expanding Refugee Access to Third-Country Solutions: International Leaders Launch the Global Task Force on Refugee Labour Mobility, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. April 6, 2022. An international task force currently chaired by Canada has come together to identify ways to increase the number of refugees resettled. The task force will focus on helping identify employment-based options for refugee resettlement. According to this news release, the task force “recognize[s] refugees’ skills, experience, and talent, in addition to their need for protection.” The task force hopes to help countries “fill skilled labour shortages and drive post-pandemic economic recovery” and open an additional pathway for refugees abroad. It will work to supplement humanitarian resettlement programs and with other groups such as governments, businesses, non-governmental organizations, and civil society groups to resettle skilled refugees.

After the Coup: Burkina Faso’s Humanitarian and Displacement Crisis by Alexandra Lamarche, Arden Bentley & Burkina Faso, Refugees International. April 21, 2022. Violence, displacement, humanitarian needs, and food insecurity continue to rise in Burkina Faso. A January 2022 coup has further destabilized the country, but the leadership transition may provide some near-term opportunities to address the country’s worsening humanitarian crisis. Meanwhile, a longer-than-usual dry season and a worsening global grain shortage amid the Russia-Ukraine conflict—where more than a third of the county’s grains are imported—make action and attention more urgent than ever.


Land, Borders and Health Lecture series hosted by Public Health & Migration, the Centre for Global Health, and the Waakebiness-Bryce Institute for Indigenous Health, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, in partnership with the Global Health and Social Accountability Program, Department of Family and Community Medicine, Temerty Faculty of Medicine (University of Toronto). A series of lectures by a group of internationally renowned scholars and activists to explore how land and borders are relevant to human health and the health of the planet, with the intent of emphasizing the importance of academic work, across disciplinary silos, focusing on restoration, restitution, and reparation. The first lecture of the series: Visions for Planetary Healing is on Friday, April 29, 2022, 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM EDT.

Virtual Discussion: Refugees and the War in Ukraine, CCIS & UCLA Center for the Study of International Migration. April 29, 2022, 3:00-5:00 PM ET. More than 4 million refugees had fled the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine. Millions more have been internally displaced or are forcibly immobilized by sieges. These dynamics come on top of existing displacements from the war in Donbas since 2014 and movements of asylum seekers and other migrants. This panel will go beyond the headlines to assess the historical context of contemporary displacements, the reception of refugees in neighbouring countries, and the comparison between the reception of Ukrainians in 2022 and Syrians in 2015.

Hundreds of Thousands of Stateless People Are Living in Legal Limbo in the United States, PBS New Hour. April 5, 2022. Around the world, conflicts, wars, and other geopolitical crises have left millions of people without citizenship in any country. They are called the “stateless,” a term the Biden administration has finally committed to defining under US law. The United Nations estimates there are approximately 10 million stateless people worldwide. A CMS study from 2019 estimates that roughly 218,000 US residents are potentially stateless or potentially at risk of statelessness. The lack of government-issued identity documents prevents many stateless people from accessing employment, housing, benefits, protection from an embassy, and travel documents. As a result, many stateless people live in legal limbo — trying to live everyday lives but fearful that it can all be taken away.

April 14 2022: RRN Research Digest

The RRN Research Digest provides a synopsis of recent research on refugee and forced migration issues from entities associated with the RRN and others.

You can download the digest in PDF format here: RRN Research Digest No. 122


Philip, A., & Couldrey, M. (March 2022). Forced Migration Review, Issue 69 ­– Climate crisis and displacement: from commitment to action, University of Oxford & Refugee Studies Centre. In this issue on Climate crisis and displacements, the authors examine how high-level policy can be translated into concrete action to address the impacts of the climate crisis on human mobility. The general articles section includes three articles on other topics: women, peace and security in displacement; cash transfers in Turkey; and asylum accommodations in the UK. FMR 69 is available in English in two formats: a magazine and a shorter Editors’ briefing, online and in print.

D’Orsi, C., & Naldi, G. (2022). Climate-induced displacement in the Sahel: A question of classification. International Review of the Red Cross, 1-37. This article examines the legal aspects of climate-induced forced displacement in the Sahel region of North Africa. The Sahel region is adversely affected by climate change, leading to the displacement of thousands of people, both cross-border migrants and internally displaced persons (IDPs). The conventional stance is that refugee status does not extend to individuals displaced due to natural or environmental catastrophes and that, consequently, a normative gap exists in international refugee law. However, the position in international law may not be as clear-cut as this conventional view assumes, in light of recent trends moving towards recognizing the rights of such displaced people. The response, legislative and otherwise, of five Sahel States towards forcibly displaced persons is examined.

Summers, K., Crist, J., & Streitwieser, B. (2022). Education as an Opportunity for Integration: Assessing Colombia, Peru, and Chile’s Educational Responses to the Venezuelan Migration Crisis. Journal on Migration and Human Security. This paper examines the distinct educational policy responses to Venezuelan migrants in Colombia, Peru, and Chile. The authors contextualize the current crisis through a sociopolitical and economic analysis. Venezuelans are not officially and legally recognized as refugees by the UNHCR. Instead, refugee status is considered on a case-by-case basis at the country level. The regional coordinating bodies tasked with promoting safe, orderly, and legal migration of Venezuelans to host countries have given uneven attention to education.

Dryden-Peterson, S. (2022) Right Where We Belong: How Refugee Teachers and Students Are Changing the Future of Education, Harvard University Press. This book uncovers that refugee teachers and students themselves are leading where governments and international agencies have been stymied. From open-air classrooms in Uganda to the hallways of high schools in Maine, new visions for refugee education are emerging. Drawing on more than 600 interviews in twenty-three countries, the author shows how teachers and students are experimenting with flexible forms of learning. Rather than adopting the unrealistic notion that all will soon return to “normal,” these schools embrace unfamiliarity, develop students’ adaptiveness, and demonstrate how children, teachers, and community members can build supportive relationships across lines of difference.

Christou, A., & Kofman, E. (2022). Gender and Migration: IMISCOE Short Reader. Springer, Cham. This open access short reader offers a critical review of the debates on the transformation of migration and gendered mobilities primarily in Europe, engaging in broader theoretical insights. The authors build on empirical case studies grounded in an analytical framework incorporating men and women, masculinities, sexualities and broader intersectional insights. This reader provides an overview of conceptual developments and methodological shifts, and implications for a gendered understanding of migration in the past 30 years.

Liddell, B.J., Batch, N., Hellyer, S., Bulnes-Diez, M., Kamte, A., Klassen, C., Wong, J., Byrow, Y., & Nickerson, A. (2022). Understanding the effects of being separated from family on refugees in Australia: a qualitative studyAustralian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health. By employing qualitative interview methods, the objective of this study was to understand the impact of family separation on refugees living in Australia. The authors concluded that family separation has an enduring effect on the wellbeing of refugees, with key pathways being ongoing fear and insecurity, disrupted social attachments and identity shifts concerning the future self. Thus, refugees separated from or missing family members struggle with ongoing stress and adjustment issues.


CYRRC Highlights Report (2022), The Child and Youth Refugee Research Coalition. This report summarizes research on refugee children, youth, and families from the past year. It is interactive—featuring quotes and soundbites from youth with lived experience, service providers, and academics. Furthermore, it also contains downloadable infographics and executive summaries and showcases an online exhibit of photographs by refugee youth from three participatory photography projects.

Report: Instrumentalising Citizenship in the Fight Against Terrorism (March 2022). The Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion & Global Citizenship Observatory.

Recent years have seen a resurgence of states’ practices of nationality deprivation as a security measure – repackaged for the 21st century as a counter-terrorism instrument. This report offers a first-of-its-kind global analysis of nationality deprivation powers related to national security and how these have evolved since 9/11, revealing alarming trends, especially in Europe and the UK. Furthermore, it offers the first comprehensive global survey of relevant legislative provisions, covering 190 countries – discussing the prevalence and scope of these powers. The report also discusses the relevant authority to take deprivation decisions, which categories of citizens are targeted and whether citizenship stripping can result in statelessness.

Briefing Paper: Dangerous journeys through Myanmar: Insercutities and immobilities for Rohingya and Muslim women in post-coup Myanmar by Kathy Win & Natalie Brinham, Institue on Statelessness and Inclusion. March 2022. This briefing paper explores the structural factors that drive Rohingya women and girls in Myanmar to take dangerous journeys in search of safety & security. It is intended to provide a snapshot of some of the issues faced by Rohingya and other displaced Muslim communities in Rakhine and their framings and understandings of the situation. The authors provide an overview of the situation in post-coup Myanmar, the gendered drivers of forced migration, and outline the experiences of women travelling through Myanmar, including experiences of arrest and detention, extortion, sexual violence and risk to life.

Report: “Now, There is Nothing Safe”: A Roadmap for Investing in Afghan Women and Girls by Devon Cone. Refugees International. April 1, 2022. This report details the challenges Afghan women refacing in Afghanistan and displacement. It outlines the steps the international community can take to ensure a better future for the country’s women and girls. The steps include securing additional protection pathways for at-risk women, supporting women in countries hosting Afghans fleeing international borders to seek safety and investing in a gender-inclusive humanitarian response inside Afghanistan.


Clause 11, Nationality and Borders Bill: Why Two-Tier Refugee Status is a Bad Idea by David Cantor, Eric Fripp, Hugo Storey and Mark Symes. RLI Blog on Refugee Law and Forced Migration. One of the most disturbing clauses of the 2021 Nationality and Borders Bill remains intact as the Bill moves toward adoption. Clause 11, which purports to allow the United Kingdom to create a two-tier system of refugee status, attacks the principle that all refugees should receive the same basic standards of treatment in the host country. As a result, it can potentially create significant injustices for most refugees arriving in the UK without affecting how refugees travel to the UK or reducing such arrivals. In this blog, the authors outline their views on why clause 11 is ineffective and likely unlawful.

Polish generosity risks hardening anti-immigrant sentiments towards Ukrainian refugees in the long term by Yvonne Su, The conversation. March 24, 2022. While the initial flows of Ukrainian refugees were housed by the approximately one million Ukrainian diaspora in Poland, the Polish government did not initially set up refugee camps — future flows of refugees will not have such familial or social ties. Instead, they will require much more state and local support.

Evacuations: Sometimes the real disaster is what happens after by Jane McAdam, Sydney Morning Herald. March 22, 2022. On Australia’s east coast, thousands of people have been left homeless due to the floods. In such situations, evacuations can be a life-saving tool. Whole towns in NSW and Queensland were ordered to evacuate as floodwaters rose. Evacuations are envisaged as a temporary measure in all cases, with return home usually the ultimate goal. However, far too often, situations are not resolved as anticipated. This is particularly concerning given that there were eight million evacuations from disasters globally in 2019 – a figure set to increase with the impacts of climate change.

How Russia is trying to stoke anti-Ukrainian sentiment in eastern EU countries by Agnieszka Weinar, The Conversation. March 23, 2022. After a failed blitzkrieg, the Russian army has adopted attacks against civilians, resulting in ever-growing refugee flows from Ukraine to neighbouring countries — 4.6 million people have fled so far, mainly women and children. The influx is expected to grow, putting the stability of the European Union at risk and creating an opportunity for Vladimir Putin, a master of information wars against open societies, to create dangerous divisions in the EU.


CRS Seminar: Understanding the ongoing conflict and human rights violations in Ethiopia. Centre for Refugee Studies, York University. Apr 13, 2022 11:30 AM EST. Refugee camps for Eritreans in northern Tigray have been destroyed, with thousands of Eritrean refugees displaced within Ethiopia, abducted or forcibly returned to Eritrea; tens of thousands more remain under siege in the region. This roundtable brings together experts with deep knowledge and experience of the region to highlight the deteriorating human rights and security conditions in the country and the Horn of Africa. 

Podcast: How We Can Better Support Refugees in Education, Harvard Edcast. April 6, 2022. Associate Professor Sarah Dryden-Peterson talks about how we can better support refugee children and teachers in education around the world. She argues that education needs to create better support for displaced children whose education is disrupted, dominated by exclusion and uncertainty about the future. Furthermore, she reflects on the current conflict between Russia and Ukraine and offers insight into what we have learned from other humanitarian crises.

Launch Event: IDMC’s Global Report on Internal Displacement (GRID). 23, May 2022. This is a day-long event with in-person and hybrid segments. The technical segment will bring together experts and practitioners to discuss the findings of this year’s GRID on the impacts of displacement on children and youth, displacement risk of the age group, data challenges and promising practices in finding solutions. The high-level segment will bring together governments, UN agencies, non-governmental organizations and academics to share different perspectives, challenges and solutions on this critical topic. 

March 30 2022: RRN Research Digest

The RRN Research Digest provides a synopsis of recent research on refugee and forced migration issues from entities associated with the RRN and others.

You can download the digest in PDF format here: RRN Research Digest No. 121


LERRN-RRN Webinar: Changing the Structures of Forced Migration Research, March 31, 2022. The final webinar of the series plans to engage with how research and research funding structures may be changed. While some changes can be brought-about by individual researchers, we recognize that some of the challenges are deeper and more structural, like unequal access to research funding. Some donors are piloting innovative initiatives, like the Canadian International Development Research Centre establishing research chairs on forced displacement with direct funding to scholars in various regions of the global South to pursue their independent research agendas. What is the role of donors in addressing the issues raised in this series? What would it take to get more donors on board with initiatives like direct funding to local researchers? What structures need to change, and what is the path forward? For more information and to register here


 Murrani, S., Lloyd, H., & Popovici, L.C. (2022) Mapping home, memory and spatial recovery in forced displacement, Social & Cultural Geography. This article presents empirical findings of a multimodal participatory mapping project conducted with refugees and asylum seekers in Southwest England. It highlights the impact of memory and deep creative mapping on the spatial practice of making-home in forced displacement. The resulting maps embody spaces of recovery; memory scapes reveal synergies between memory constructs and the concept of home in exile. The project asks how a creative participatory method of mapping home through memory reconsolidation can ameliorate the trauma of displacement and aid the re-making of home.

Kerwin, D., Pacas, J., & Warren, R. (2022). Ready to Stay: A Comprehensive Analysis of the US Foreign-Born Populations Eligible for Special Legal Status Programs and for Legalization Under Pending Bills  Journal on Migration and Human Security10(1), 37–76. This paper offers estimates of US foreign-born populations that are eligible for special legal status programs and those that would be eligible for permanent residence (legalization) under pending bills. It seeks to provide policymakers, government agencies, community-based organizations, researchers, and others with a unique tool to assess the potential impact, implement, and analyze the success of these programs. It views timely, comprehensive data on targeted immigrant populations as an essential pillar of legalization preparedness, implementation, and evaluation.

Rashi, T. (2022). Jewish Ethics Regarding Refugees: Ideology and Realization. Journal of Law and Religion, 37(1), 153-166. This article addresses the Jewish ethical approach to refugees. According to Jewish ethics, help must be offered to refugees of a foreign people, and sometimes, for the sake of peace, even to those of an enemy state. The author reflects on breaking barriers of hatred and concludes that priority must be given to refugees in acute distress and who are near the border.

Wallace, R. (2022). New Reasons for Forced Displacement: A Multimodal Discourse Analysis of the Construction of Refugee Identity. Journalism Practice16(2-3), 244–261. New narratives of forced displacement and complex refugee identities are often excluded from mediated communications about important issues. By focusing on the discourse of two distinct objects of analysis, that of nongovernmental organizations and transnational journalism projects across Latin America, this study sought to better understand how news media and essential advocates for refugees are framing narratives of forced displacement throughout the region. These findings suggest that complex refugee identities are symbolically annihilated in the construction of news narratives. New reasons for forced displacement are primarily ignored, relying more heavily on homogenous representations and existing frames for Latinx refugees, accounting for greater diversity in representations of foreign refugees.


Report: Crisis in Ukraine: Humanitarian and Human Rights Imperatives by Daphne Panayotatos, Irla Atanda, & Eric Schwartz, Refugees International. March 21, 2022. This report is the result of a Refugees International research trip conducted in Poland between March 2 and March 9, documenting a crisis that has resulted in the forced displacement within and outside Ukraine of nearly a quarter of the Ukrainian population, and humanitarian suffering of many millions more. While the speed of the response outside Ukraine has been unprecedented and generous, Refugees International calls for additional EU and international support for Poland and other refugee-receiving countries bordering Ukraine. Additionally, urging for measures to ensure that non-Ukrainians seeking to flee Ukraine are treated with the same fairness and humanity being accorded to Ukrainians.

Report: From adaptability to vulnerability: Changes in admission criteria and refugee participation in social assistance by Lisa Kaida, Max Stick and Feng Hou, Statistics Canada. The 2002 Immigration Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) replaced the Immigration Act, 1976 as the primary legislation guiding immigration in Canada. This report summarizes results from a recent study that compared the long-term use of social assistance among resettled refugees arriving under pre-IRPA guidelines (1997 to 2001), during the transition period (2002 to 2004), and post-IRPA (2005 to 2009). The authors used the Longitudinal immigration database to determine whether resettled refugees arriving after the introduction of IRPA were more likely to rely on social assistance than earlier cohorts.


UNHCR Press Briefing: A month since the start of the war, almost a quarter of Ukraine’s population are displaced, UNHCR. March 25, 2022. Summary of the current humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, outlining the devastating and far-reaching effects of war. Individuals, families and communities will need protection, shelter, assistance and access to basic services like health, education and social protection for years, if not decades. However, the most effective form of humanitarian relief would be a halt to this war.

Family separations in Ukraine highlight the importance of children’s rights by Christina Clark-Kazak, The Conversation. March 20, 2022. Given the conscription of men aged 18 to 60 in Ukraine, most Ukrainians fleeing into neighbouring countries are women and children. Adults making decisions on behalf of separated children and those in care should look to the lessons of the past when focusing on the best interests of children.

Australia should grant temporary visas for all jobs earning over $70,000 by Paul Karp, The Guardian. March 17, 2022. The report argues that workers on the temporary skilled visa are particularly vulnerable to exploitation because the visa is tied to their sponsoring employer, and they must leave Australia within 60 days if they stop working for them.The Grattan Institute called for a crackdown on bad-faith employers who mistreat their workers, with the home affairs department to conduct more random audits.

Can Ukraine Change Australia’s Attitude Toward Refugees? By Grant Wyeth, The Diplomat. March 17, 2022. There is a notable shift in public sentiment toward refugees in Australia in response to the Ukraine crisis. While it might be easy to be cynical about the different responses to European refugees compared to refugees from other regions of the world, the goal instead should be to use this moment to reframe public perceptions toward refugees more broadly, and allow greater empathy to develop for those fleeing other conflict zones too.

Humanitarian protection and durable solutions by Kristin Bergtora Sandvik and Adèle Garnier, Refugee Law Initiative. March 4, 2022. This blog aims to contribute to understanding the evolving displacement context and the implications for the international protection regime and durable solutions, providing a set of initial reflections. Specifically, paying particular attention to contemporary refugee politics, the authors produce a list of initial issues concerning vulnerability, prioritization, and pathways to support advocacy on behalf of Ukraine.


Podcast: The Conversation Weekly (March 10, 2022) The trauma of life in limbo for refugees and asylum seekers in immigration detention. In this week’s episode, two experts on immigration detention in Australia and the UK discuss why people are waiting months, sometimes years, for a decision about their future – and the impact it is having on their lives.

Summer Course: Centre for Refugee Studies, June 6-10. The course provides an interdisciplinary, interactive and experiential approach to the study of forced migration. Through attending lectures and related small group sessions, course participants develop a deepened understanding of the political, economic, social and cultural contexts of forced migration, and the major state and non-state institutions involved in refugee protection and advocacy. In addition, participants will have an opportunity during the course for structured networking and idea collaboration through panels and small group discussions. For more information and to apply click here.

March 17 2022: RRN Research Digest

The RRN Research Digest provides a synopsis of recent research on refugee and forced migration issues from entities associated with the RRN and others.

You can download the digest in PDF format here: RRN Research Digest No. 120


Goldring, L., & Landolt, P. (2022). From illegalized migrant toward permanent resident: assembling precarious legal status trajectories and differential inclusion in Canada. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 48(1), 33-52. The authors examine the trajectories of illegalized Anglo-Caribbean and Latin American migrants living in Canada in the mid-2000s. They applied for one or both humanitarian legal status adjustment mechanisms to obtain permanent residence: late refugee claims and applications on humanitarian and compassionate grounds. Despite sharing early illegal status, the authors found regional racialised and gendered differences in their Precarious legal status trajectories (PLSTs). The article presents a framework for understanding how different trajectories are populated, and how the somewhat unpredictable outcomes of adjudications may lead to further applications and a reorganization of PLSTs.

Simeon, J. C. (Ed.). (2022). Serious International Crimes, Human Rights, and Forced Migration. Routledge. This volume explores the interrelationships and direct causal connection between serious international crimes, serious breaches to fundamental human rights, and gross affronts to human dignity that lead to mass forced migration. The book will be a valuable resource for students, academics, researchers, and policymakers working in international law, migration, human rights, and international criminal law.

Journal Special Issue: Puumala, E. and Shindo, R. (2021). Language, Everyday Citizenship, and Community. Citizenship Studies Vol.25, No. 6. This special issue contributes to the studies of migrant solidarity activism to explore how people come together to build relationships and enact their visions of community. The authors collectively demonstrate the critical role language plays in various everyday interactions, through which the boundaries of community, between ‘us’ and ‘them’, are contested, reproduced, and negotiated.

Weima, Y., & Brankamp, H. Introduction: Camp methodologies: The “how” of studying campsArea. This special section contributes to the growing interdisciplinary field of camp studies by examining how scholars approach and study camps and camp-like spaces. How do camp contexts shape our underlying research philosophies, and how do particular research methods impact our conceptualizations of camps? The contributors to this special section provide a variety of answers to these questions, drawing on empirical research in current and historical camp settings. Overall, the authors use “camp methodologies” not as a set of prescribed tools, techniques, or epistemologies to be followed but as a shorthand for approaches that consider how camp geographies delimit research activities and methodological choices in turn (re)construct the camp conceptually in different ways. Ultimately, this collection aims to encourage critical debates and reflections to shed more light on the methodological effects, positionalities, responsibilities, complicities, and continuing necessities of studying camps.


Report: Nowhere to Run: Eritrean Refugees in Tigray by Sarah Miller, March 3, 2022. Refugees International. This report details the plight of Eritrean refugees in Ethiopia amid the country’s civil war recommending steps the government of Ethiopia, UNHCR, the United States, and neighbouring countries must take to offer safety to this population.

Statement: Rohingya Genocide Trial Sends Important Signal by Daniel Sullivan, February 28, 2022. Refugees International. The continuation of the Rohingya genocide trial at the International Court of Justice is an important signal of accountability—and a reminder that the United States has yet to call the military’s crimes genocide.

Report: The Fallacy of Control: Tightened Asylum and Reception Policies Undermine Protection in Greece by Daphne Panayotatos, February 24, 2022. Refugees International. Greek officials claim a decline in asylum seekers indicates that the government has “regained control” of migration in Greece. But in reality, Greece has undermined access to asylum. Refugees International offers a new vision for Greece to humanely manage asylum and reception.

One Year Later: Canada’s Enduring Appeal to Prospective Immigrants in the Face of COVID-19 Comparative Analysis, August 2020 – August 2021 by World Education Services (WES), January 27, 2022. This report compares results from surveys of individuals who had applied for a WES academic credential evaluation for immigration purposes. The goal was to better understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on immigration plans. The comparative analysis addresses questions such as: To what extent were people still interested in immigrating to Canada? What was making them more or less interested? Over the past year, how had key factors affected their interest in immigration?

UN Brief: War in Ukraine causes fastest growing refugee crisis since World War II by Kristy Siegfried, March 11, 2022. The number of people who have fled Ukraine today reached 2.5 million, while nearly 2 million are thought to be displaced inside the country, and the number of refugees is expected to exceed 4 million in the coming days. Reuters reports from Poland, where thousands of Poles have jumped in to help some 1.5 million refugees with offers of places to stay, transportation, food, and even babysitting services, but risk becoming overwhelmed. Together with UNHCR today, the Polish government began distributing emergency cash assistance to refugees in Warsaw. Meanwhile, some refugees have moved westward, with more than 80,000 Ukrainians now registered in Germany and more arriving every day.

2021 Conference Report: Making sense of movement in the context of climate change, Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report released last month noted that 3.3 to 3.6 billion people – nearly half the world’s population – live in contexts highly vulnerable to climate change. The latest Kaldor Centre Conference delved deep into the legal and practical challenges of responding to people forced from their homes by the impacts of disasters and climate change. This conference report includes key takeaways, a full video and the six sessions in podcast format.


New research asks who counts as ‘vulnerable’ in Canada’s refugee protection regime, Yfile, York University. March 2, 2022. What does it mean to be vulnerable? York University Professor Dagmar Soennecken (School of Public Policy and Administration, Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies) is part of a global team of researchers examining the meaning of vulnerability in the context of migrants who need special assistance and protection.

A Tale of Two Refugee Crises, By Rachael Reilly and Michael Flynn (Global Detention Project), Inter Press Service, March 7, 2022. When the 2015 refugee “crisis” drove more than a million Syrians towards Europe, the EU justified detaining these refugees for up to 18 months. Less than two weeks into Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and more than one million people have already fled into neighbouring countries—but don’t expect Brussels to call for their detention this time. 

Also on our Radar on the Ukrainian humanitarian crisis:


Podcast: The trauma of life in limbo for refugees and asylum seekers in immigration detention by Gemma Ware and Justin Bergman, March 10, 2022. The Conversation. The life of limbo for people in immigration detention is often deeply traumatic. In this week’s episode of The Conversation Weekly, two experts on immigration detention in Australia and the UK discuss why people are waiting months, sometimes years, for a decision about their future – and the impact it’s having on them.

Video Recording: Book Launch – Documenting Displacement. The PRIO Migration Centre has released the online book launch of Documenting Displacement: Questioning Methodological Boundaries in Forced Migration Research, edited by Katarzyna Grabska and Christina R. Clark-Kazak.


March 3 2022: RRN Research Digest

The RRN Research Digest provides a synopsis of recent research on refugee and forced migration issues from entities associated with the RRN and others.

You can download the digest in PDF format here: RRN Research Digest No. 119

Webinar: Haunted by Violence. March 11 at 10:30am EST/Toronto time. We are excited to welcome this extraordinary trio of anthropologists to CRS and LERRN for Haunted by Violence, a discussion of auto-ethnographical journeys between Bosnia-Hercegovina and the US (as well as Canada). Anyone interested in refugee subjectivity, autonomy, agency, epistemic or ontological violence may want to read these short interventions by the authors here before attending the discussion. Please register to receive a zoom link.


Bose, P. (2021). White nationalism and the specter of the refugee. In Nilsen, S. & Turner, S (Eds.), White supremacy and the American media (pp. 169-185). London: Routledge. In this chapter, the author argues that the figure of the refugee has always played a complicated and contradictory role in global culture. While those fleeing persecution and danger have been seen through the lens of victimhood and thus deserving of sanctuary, news coverage, discourse, and cultural representation have helped produce the refugee as a figure of threat. These are the ideas of refugees as a security threat, as a demographic threat, and as an environmental threat to existing populations and nations.

New Journal Issue: Banerjee, P. (Ed.). (2021). A Special Issue on Displacements and Dispossessions. Refugee Watch: A South Asian Journal on Forced Migration. This special issue includes original research papers and book reviews that engage with issues of forced displacement and dispossessions, specifically the role of education, the effects of economic recession and global pandemic, labour market and more. These articles are intended to initiate dialogue in transnational and global spaces and thus encourage innovative interventions. 

[Open Access] New Book: Yi-Neumann, F., Lauser, A., Fuhse, A., & Bräunlein, P. J. (Eds.). (2022). Material Culture and (Forced) Migration: Materializing the transient. UCL Press. The authors argue that materiality is a fundamental dimension of migration. During migration journeys, people take things with them, or they lose, find and engage things along the way. Movements themselves are framed by objects such as borders, passports, tents, camp infrastructures, boats and mobile phones. This volume brings together chapters that are based on research into a broad range of movements – from the study of forced migration and displacement to the analysis of retirement migration. The chapters are tied together by the perspective of material culture and an understanding of materiality that does not reduce objects to mere symbols.

New book: Twigt, M. (2022). Mediated lives: Waiting and hope among Iraqi refugees in Jordan. Berghahn Books. Using the example of Iraqi refugees in Jordan’s capital of Amman, this book describes how information and communication technologies play out in the everyday experiences of urban refugees geographically located in the Global South. It shows how interactions between online and offline spaces are key for making sense of the humanitarian regime, carving out a sense of home, and sustaining hope. This book paints a humanizing account of making do amid legal marginalization, prolonged insecurity, and the proliferation of digital technologies. The introduction can be read here. If you are interested in reviewing this book for a relevant journal, an electronic review copy can be requested here. To recommend this book to your library, use this form

[Open Access] Cantat, C., Cook, I. M., & Rajaram, P. K. (2022). Opening up the University: Teaching and Learning with Refugees. Berghahn Books. Through a series of empirically and theoretically informed reflections, Opening Up the University offers insights into the process of setting up and running programs that cater to displaced students. Including contributions from educators, administrators, practitioners, and students, this expansive collected volume aims to inspire and question those who are considering creating their own interventions, speaking to policy makers and university administrators on specific points relating to the access and success of refugees in higher education, and suggests concrete avenues for further action within existing academic structures.

 Salam, Z., Odenigbo, O., Newbold, B., Wahoush, O., & Schwartz, L. (2022). Systemic and Individual Factors That Shape Mental Health Service Usage Among Visible Minority Immigrants and Refugees in Canada: A Scoping ReviewAdministration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research. The purpose of this review is to explore the following research question: “what are the barriers and facilitators for accessing mental health care services among visible immigrants and refugees in Canada?”. A wide range of barriers and facilitators were identified at both the systemic and individual levels. Unique differences rooted within landing and legal statuses were also highlighted within the findings to provide nuance amongst immigrants and refugees. The interplay of structural issues rooted in Canadian health policies and immigration laws coupled with individual factors produce complex barriers and facilitators when seeking mental health services. The findings also provide suggestions for mental health care providers, resettlement agencies, policy recommendations, and future directions for research are discussed as actionable points of departure.

 [Open Access] Jubilut, L. L., & Casagrande, M. M. (2021). The continued pivotal role of the 1951 Convention in Refugee Protection: Evidences from dialogues with Latin American refuges law and the GCR. Editora da Universidade Federal de Roraima.

The 1951 Convention sets out the international legal definition of refugee accepted to this day and, at the same time, allows for its (regional) expansion. It also lays the foundation and the operational framework for a human rights-based approach towards rights for refugees. This human rights-based approach becomes clearer when dialogue between the 1951 Convention and more recent normative instruments – such as the Latin American Cartagena Declaration and the Global Compact for Refugees (GCR) is established. Building on these inter-normative dialogues, this article aims to unpack the lasting impacts of the 1951 Convention in its 70th anniversary, from a protection framework perspective and through Human Rights and International Refugee Law lenses.

Gisselquist, R. M. (2021). Involuntary migration, inequality, and integration: Vietnamese and Afghan Migrants in Canada, Germany, the U.K., and the U.S. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies. 47(21).  This special issue explores the experiences of global migrants across diverse environments, focusing on inequality between migrants and host populations in countries of settlement. It explores questions such as: why are economic inequalities between these populations deeper and more persistent in some situations than others? How has ‘integration’ in this sense varied across groups and contexts over time? What factors contribute to such variation? What policies and programmes facilitate better and more equitable economic outcomes for migrants?

 Esaiasson, P., Lajevardi, N., & Sohlberg, J. (2022). Reject, limbo, and accept: the effect of migration decisions on asylum seekers. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies.

What effect does the state’s decision to grant or reject a residence permit have on asylum seekers? Relying on repeated surveys with recently arrived asylum seekers to Sweden, the authors examine how the “limbo” nature of the waiting period, and the subsequent rejection or acceptance, shapes asylum seekers’ life satisfaction, health, horizontal trust in Swedes, and vertical trust in Swedish institutions. The migration decision meaningfully affects their well-being and shapes their attitudes towards the host country’s institutions and people.

New book: Bisaillon, L. (2022). Screening Out: HIV Testing and the Canadian Immigration Experience. University of British Columbia Press. Following the sequence of events in the application process of a sub-Saharan African woman in her interactions with an immigration doctor, this book is an institutional ethnography of the Canadian immigration process from the perspective of the very people to whom the exclusionary health policy is directed. Laura Bisaillon demonstrates that mandatory HIV screening triggers institutional practices that are highly problematic not only for would-be immigrants, refugees, and refugee applicants, but also for those bureaucrats, doctors, lawyers, and other actors whose work tethers them to the Canadian immigration system. This book produces a vital corrective to state claims about the functioning – and the professional and administrative practices supporting – mandatory HIV testing and medical examination, showing how and where things need to change.


MPP as a microcosm: What’s wrong with asylum at the border and how to fix it by Yael Schacher, Refugee International, February 11, 2022. The program “Remain in Mexico,” formally known as the Migration Protection Protocols (MPP), returned asylum seekers to Mexico while their claims were adjudicated has been terminated. However, in December, the administration began a court-ordered reimplementation of the program, putting asylum seekers at risk and belying the U.S. responsibility to provide access to protection at the border. In January, Refugees International’s Deputy Director Dr. Yael Schacher watched the first immigration court proceedings for asylum seekers placed in the new iteration of MPP in El Paso. In this brief, she describes “a program with a Kafkaesque quality,” applied arbitrarily and disadvantages asylum seekers in presenting their claims. The author argues the new MPP is indicative of a compromised approach to asylum at the border and fundamental problems with asylum adjudication in the United States and recommends a new approach to both.

The Fallacy of Control: Tightened Asylum and Reception Policies Undermine Protection in Greece by Daphne Panayotatos, Refugee International, February 24, 2022. Greek officials point to recent declines in the numbers of asylum seekers arriving, awaiting decisions, and residing in camps as indicators that they have “regained control” of the migration situation in Greece. However, the trends are primarily driven by policies and practices that undermine protection and dignified reception. New facilities on the Aegean islands and mainland reflect an approach to asylum based on deterrence, containment, and exclusion. This report details the current state of asylum policies in Greece, offering a new vision for responsibility and humanely managing asylum and reception.

With Australia reopening its borders to tourists, why are thousands of refugees still waiting for entry? By Claire Higgins & Regina Jefferies, The Conversation, February 15, 2022. There is no clear path for Afghans already in Australia. Not only has the Australian government been slow to process Afghans fleeing their homeland, but it has also not made it easier for those already in Australia to stay permanently.


Webinar: Haunted by Violence. March 11 at 10:30am EST/Toronto time. We are excited to welcome this extraordinary trio of anthropologists to CRS and LERRN for Haunted by Violence, a discussion of auto-ethnographical journeys between Bosnia-Hercegovina and the US (as well as Canada). Anyone interested in refugee subjectivity, autonomy, agency, epistemic or ontological violence may want to read these short interventions by the authors here before attending the discussion. Please register to receive a zoom link.

New film: Bisaillon, L. (2020) (dir.). The Unmaking of Medical Inadmissibility. In this 20-minute documentary film in animatic form, Bisaillon unfolds experiences that people including refugees and refugee applicants with chronic illness and developmental or genetic otherness have with the Canadian immigration system as they apply for permanent residency. The film features the stories of people wanting to immigrate to Canada permanently, who are struggling to deal with having been denied or contending with the possibility of being denied because of who and how they are. 14 original illustrations appear on the project website to help the viewer interpret the medial, legal, bureaucratic and academic language.

Short Course: Palestine Refugees and International Law led by Professor Dawn Chatty (RSC) and Professor Susan M Akram (Boston Law School). March 11-12, 2022. Refugee Studies Centre, University of Oxford. This online two-day short course places the Palestinian refugee case study within the broader context of the international human rights regime. Within a human rights framework, it examines the policies and practices of Middle Eastern states as they impinge upon Palestinian refugees. Through a mix of online lectures, online working group exercises and interactive sessions, participants actively engage with the contemporary debates in international law and analyze the specific context of Palestinian refugees in the Middle East (Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, the West Bank, Gaza and Israel).

Short Course: International Online Schools in Forced Migration led by Dr. Catherine Briddick, Professor Matthew J Gibney, and Professor Tom Scott-Smith. Dates: 14-18 March 2022, 4-8 July 2022 and 11-15 July 2022. Refugee Studies Centre, University of Oxford. The school will be held three times online this year. Each Online School will involve an intensive, interdisciplinary and participative approach to the study of forced migration that enables people working with refugees and other forced migrants to reflect critically on the forces and institutions that dominate the worlds of displaced people. The course combines Oxford’s tradition of academic excellence with a stimulating discussion-based method of teaching, learning and reflection. The Online School will cover subjects including Conceptualising Forced Migration, The Moral Foundations of Refugeehood, International Law and Refugee Protection, and The Politics of Humanitarianism and a choice of optional modules.

February 10 2022: RRN Research Digest

The RRN Research Digest provides a synopsis of recent research on refugee and forced migration issues from entities associated with the RRN and others.

You can download the digest in PDF format here: RRN Research Digest No. 118


In celebration of Black History month, the RRN team would like to share with you some useful resources and publications. Please share with us any other information to include in the upcoming February issue:


New journal issue:  Refugee Review Volume V. Refugee Review is a journal of the Emerging Scholars and Practitioners on Migration Issues network and is a fully open access, peer-reviewed journal that supports young researchers who work on issues of refugees and forced migration studies. The latest volume is dedicated to the impact of Covid-19 on migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers in areas of borders, welfare, and intersectional vulnerabilities. It contains articles by refugee scholars and artists as well as practitioners from Poland, Lebanon, Jordan, India, Morocco, Greece, Somalia, Nigeria, South Africa, the U.S., and Italy.

New book: Grabska, K., & Clark-Kazak, C. R. (Eds.). (2022). Documenting Displacement: Questioning Methodological Boundaries in Forced Migration Research. McGill-Queen’s University Press. Documenting Displacement explores the ethics and methods of research in diverse forced migration contexts and proposes new ways of thinking about and documenting displacement. Each chapter delves into specific ethical and methodological challenges, with particular attention to unequal power relations in the co-creation of knowledge, questions about representation and ownership, and the adaptation of methodological approaches to contexts of mobility. Contributors reflect honestly on what has worked and what has not, providing useful points of discussion for future research by both established and emerging researchers. The recording of our pre-book launch with LERRN & RRN webinar series is available here. PRIO hosts the next event in the book launch series; details here.

Screening Out: HIV Testing and the Canadian Immigration Experience, by Laura Bisaillon, University of British Columbia Press (to appear in April 2022). Following the sequence of events in the application process of a sub-Saharan African woman in her interactions with an immigration doctor, this book is an institutional ethnography of the Canadian immigration process from the perspective of the very people to whom the exclusionary health policy is directed. Laura Bisaillon demontrates that mandatory HIV screening triggers institutional practices that are highly problematic not only for would-be immigrants, refugees and refugee applicants, but also for those bureaucrats, doctors, lawyers, and other actors whodr work tethers them to the Canadian immigration system. This book produces a vital corrective to state claims about the functioning – and the professional and administrative practices supporting – mandatory HIV testing and medical examination, showing how and where things need to change.

Elcioglu, E. F. (2021). Neoliberal Fatigue: The Effects of Private Refugee Sponsorship on Canadians’ Political Consciousness. Critical Sociology. Drawing on 25 interviews, this article examines the insights that these privileged citizens of the global north gain as they help refugees struggling with the marginalizing consequences of neoliberal austerity in their new hostland. While sponsors learn about the challenges facing working-class racialized newcomers (otherwise obscured to sponsors by their racial, class, and citizenship privileges), the program robs sponsors of the time and mental bandwidth to reflect on the structural nature of these challenges.

Consequently, sponsors rarely understand refugees’ struggles as public troubles necessitating broader intervention, including modest policy reform. I call this cognitive outcome neoliberal fatigue. The author concludes by discussing how this fatigue thwarts social change and reinforces neoliberal capitalism.

[Open access] Nicholas R. Micinski (2022). Delegating Responsibility: International Cooperation on Migration in the European Union. Ann Arbor, Mich: University of Michigan Press. Delegating Responsibility explores the politics of migration in the European Union and explains how the EU responded to the 2015–17 refugee crisis. Based on 86 interviews and fieldwork in Greece and Italy, Micinski proposes a new theory of international cooperation on international migration. States approach migration policies in many ways—such as coordination, collaboration, subcontracting, and unilateralism—but which policy they choose is based on capacity and on credible partners on the ground.

[Open access] Lunstrum, Elizabeth, and Bose, Pablo S. (2022). Environmental displacement in the anthropocene. Annals of the American Association of Geographers. This intervention invites more substantial scholarly attention to human displacement in and of the Anthropocene—this current age in which humans have become the primary drivers of global environmental change—and sets out an initial framework for its study. The framework is organized around three interrelated contributions. First is the recognition that displacement is driven not just by climate change but also broader forms of environmental change including biodiversity loss, changes to land and water resources, and the buildup of nuclear debris, along with their intersections. Second, the framework parses out three distinct moments of displacement in the Anthropocene: displacement as a consequence of, prerequisite to, and active response to environmental change. Third, the framework rejects environmental (neo)determinism by showing how displacement across these distinct moments and drivers is more than environmental: It is the articulation of environmental and sociopolitical–economic factors, which are routinely shaped by inequality and play out within a broader series of crises and crisis narratives that drive displacement and hinder viable solutions.


Issue Brief: Networks of Care for Displaced LGBTQ+ People: How the United States Can Support LGBTQ+-led Organizations in Central America and Mexico, Refugee International and ICRA Casabierta, January 27, 2022. Refugees International and ICRA Casabierta surveyed NGOs throughout Central America about the challenges facing LGBTQ+ displaced people in the region and what the United States can do to help.

Report: Do Not Forget: Aiding and Protecting Civilians in South Sudan, By Daniel Sullivan, Refugee International, January 13, 2022. South Sudan is facing one of the largest displacement and humanitarian crises on earth, with 4 million citizens displaced. Yet the attention of donors and diplomats is waning.

Top 10 Migration Issues of 2021, Migration Policy Institute. The rollout of vaccines, increased testing, and other public-health measures led several parts of the world in 2021 to begin recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. But the virus and its variants abated in fits and starts. As a result, 2021 did not see a return to pre-pandemic migration trends, but instead witnessed new patterns of movement in some places. At the same time, new conflicts erupted in 2021, ongoing crises continued to smoulder, and forcibly displaced migrants often found themselves stuck in the middle. Impacts of the pandemic were not responsible for all MPI Top 10 migration issues of the year, but the repercussions of the public-health crisis and related economic fallout were felt widely. Explore these and other issues in the MPI annual countdown below:

  1. World Reopens Unevenly after First Year of Pandemic as It Reckons with Delta and Omicron
  2. In Landmark Integration Move, Countries in South America and the Caribbean Extend Protections to Millions of Venezuelans
  3. Increasingly, Vaccination Is Becoming a Necessary Ticket to Travel, Challenging Those Who Lack Access
  4. New Crises Around Globe Add to Existing Humanitarian Burden and Destabilize Countries of First Asylum
  5. Biden Struggles to Dismantle Trump-Era Border Restrictions
  6. As Government in Afghanistan Falls, Mass Evacuation of Afghans Occurs
  7. At Europe’s Edge, “Weaponizing” Migration for Geopolitical Aims
  8. Migration Streams through the Western Hemisphere Diversify
  9. The United States Joins Europe in Focus on “Root Causes” of Migration
  10. Remittance Flows Beat the Odds to Grow Despite Pandemic


Campaign Targeting Immigration Detention in Canada Builds Momentum, By Samer Muscati & Hana Gros, Human Rights Watch, January 27, 2022. Since Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International launched the joint #WelcomeToCanada campaign in October 2021 calling on Canada to stop incarcerating immigration detainees in provincial jails, more than 5,000 people have written to the Government of British Columbia (BC) urging the province to listen. Learn about the campaign here.

Asylum-seeker smuggling is a symptom, not a root cause, by Rober Falconer and Craig Damian Smith, The Globe and Mail, January 31, 2022. Earlier this month, the Patels – a family of four from India – died of cold exposure trying to walk south through the Canada-U.S. border near Emerson, Man. But rather than look at how policies incentivize such irregular migration and produce such tragedies, Canadian politicians and news media have been quick to parrot rhetoric from other rich countries, speculating about the responsibility of criminal smugglers and wider networks of nefarious actors. Read more.

Abul Rizvi, ‘Smoke and mirrors: Afghans neglected in Australia’s humanitarian program’, Pearls and Irritations, January 25 2022. Far from holding out a helping hand to Afghans left stranded by the withdrawal of foreign troops, Australia has been even less generous than normal. Read more.

Rebecca L. Root, ‘Promises and pledges: Has the Global Compact on Refugees delivered?’, Devex, January 27 2022. Out of the current 1,626 pledges, according to the U.N. Refugee Agency’s pledge dashboard, only 164 have been marked as completed, 620 are listed as “in progress,” and 47 are considered in the planning stages. Read more.


New video: Cruel, costly and ineffective: The failure of offshore processing in Australia. Based on Madeline Gleeson and Natasha Yacoub’s recent Policy brief from Kaldor centre that takes a deep dive  into Australia’s offshore processing system for refugee claims. This new short video features striking animation and data visualisation.

Zoryan Institute’s New Dispersion Podcast. Season One of the Zoryan Institute’s new Dispersion Podcast is now live on SpotifyApple PodcastsGoogle Podcasts, and Acast. Through conversations with individuals from diverse communities, Dispersion celebrates the experiences of Canadians living away from, and returning to, their homeland, and explores important theories and topics related to diaspora and transnational studies. Topics covered in Season One range from defining diaspora, to return migration, to cross-generational identity and cultural education, to artistic representations of diaspora experiences. By bringing these conversations to new audiences, Dispersion aims to challenge stereotypes and discrimination, and bring people together. 

Upcoming webinar: BHER Speaker Series: Together for Peace in Somalia Film Screening and Rebuilding Somalia Panel

February 16, 2022

9:00 – 10:30am (Toronto)

with Hawa Sabriye, Maryan Madobe and Jama Ahmed Mohamed

Join the Zoom session here.

January 26 2022: RRN Research Digest

The RRN Research Digest provides a synopsis of recent research on refugee and forced migration issues from entities associated with the RRN and others.

You can download the digest in PDF format here: RRN Research Digest No. 117

LERRN/RRN Workshop Series

Learn more and register here

Recent Publications and New Research

Souter, J. (2022) Asylum as Reparation: Refuge and Responsibility for the Harms of Displacement (Palgrave-Macmillan). This book argues that states have a special obligation to offer asylum as reparation to refugees for whose flight they are responsible. It shows the great relevance of reparative justice and the importance of the causes of contemporary forced migration for our understanding of states’ responsibilities to refugees. Part I explains how this view presents an alternative to the dominant humanitarian approach to asylum in political theory and some practices. Part II outlines the conditions under which asylum should act as a form of reparation, arguing that a state owes this form of asylum to refugees where it bears responsibility for the unjustified harms that they experience and where asylum is the most fitting form of reparation available. Part III explores some of the ethical implications of this reparative approach for the workings of states’ asylum systems and the international politics of refugee protection. 

Special Issue: Involuntary Migration, Inequality, and Integration: Vietnamese and Afghan Migrants in Canada, Germany, the U.K., and the U.S., Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, New issue 47(19) November 2021. A rich literature considers the experiences of global migrants across diverse environments. This special issue explores such experiences with a focus on inequality between migrants and host populations in countries of settlement. It asks: why are economic inequalities between these populations deeper and more persistent in some situations than others? How has ‘integration’ in this sense varied across groups and contexts and over time? What factors contribute to such variation? What policies and programmes facilitate better and more equitable economic outcomes for migrants? The issue approaches these questions through a focused and comparative study of two migrant populations (Vietnamese and Afghan) in four Western countries (Canada, Germany, the U.K., and the U.S.). It pays particular attention to involuntary migrants, who fled conflict in their home regions beginning in the 1970s–1980s.

New issue: Externalisation / Mobility and agency in protracted displacement, Forced Migration Review (FMR) 68. The issue includes a major feature on Externalisation. With States increasingly taking action beyond their own borders to prevent the arrival of refugees and asylum seekers, we examine the consequences for protection. A second feature focuses on mobility and agency for those living in protracted displacement, produced in collaboration with the TRAFIG research project. Articles available in French here.

Dedeoglu, S. (2021). Cultivating Precarisation: Intersecting Vulnerabilities of Syrian Refugees in the Turkish Agricultural Sectorv. Work, Employment and Society. This article explores how the vulnerabilities of Syrian refugees influence their integration into Turkish labour markets, in particular the agricultural sector. ‘Vulnerable integration’ refers to the inclusion of the most vulnerable migrant labour – women and children – in the face of rivalry among different segments of the precariat to obtain existing agricultural jobs. With a focus on intersectional vulnerabilities and the feminisation of precarisation of Syrian labour in Turkey, the author aims to highlight the interconnectedness between women’s production and social reproduction by developing a sociological multidimensional dynamic way of thinking about the integration of Syrian refugee labour in Turkey’s seasonal agricultural labour markets.

New publication: Poetry and Settled Status for All: An Anthology (CivicLeicester, 2022) is now available. Poetry and Settled Status for All presents 114 poems and short prose pieces from 97 writers from around the world, exploring themes that include lived experience of migration, refugee and undocumented migrant experiences, and the hostile environment. The anthology features contributions from seasoned writers with many publications to their names alongside emerging voices and has been described variously as “powerful,” “thought-provoking,” and “effective”. The volume is inspired by and builds on how, around the world, campaigners are asking governments to give Settled Status, Indefinite Leave to Remain and humane pathways to citizenship to all in their jurisdictions who need such status. You can also watch a video of readings by the authors held on December 21, 2021.

News and blog posts

Novak Djokovic was detained for five days – refugees in the same hotel have been there for years, Melissa Gater, The Conversation Canada, January 24, 2022. Djokovic’s visa debacle and short stay in the Park hotel is a stark contrast to the plight of the 30-plus asylum seekers also detained there. Journalists flocked to the hotel to cover the story of the detained tennis player but paid little attention to Djokovic’s neighbours, some of whom have been there for more than two years. The author spotlights the plight of those detainees and highlights how governments could find loopholes in laws and conventions to detain asylum seekers indefinitely. 

How Canada should be preparing to help young Afghan refugees, Emily Pelley, The Conversation Canada, January 16, 2022. The government of Canada has committed to bringing 40,000 Afghan refugees to Canada. To date, almost 6,500 have arrived since August 2021. The author uses her focus on young refugees from Syria to draw some lessons learned and better understand how Canada was prepared to receive and support refugee children and youth coming from countries devastated by war and armed conflict. She focuses on Halifax, N.S., as a case study to show how smaller urban centres supported the integration of young refugees.

Digital and social media

The value of social structures for new refugees: Lessons from the Syrian experience (podcast), this Policy options Podcast episode three individuals who have deep experience in refugee migration and settlement in Canada are interviewied.  

January 13 2022: RRN Research Digest

The RRN Research Digest provides a synopsis of recent research on refugee and forced migration issues from entities associated with the RRN and others.

You can download the digest in PDF format here: RRN Research Digest No. 116

Recent Publications and New Research

Korntheuer, A., Hynie, M., Kleist, M., Farooqui, S., Lutter, E., & Westphal, M. (2021). Inclusive Resettlement? Integration Pathways of Resettled Refugees With Disabilities in Germany and CanadaFrontiers in Human Dynamics3. The purpose of this article is to explore the existing intersectional knowledge on integration and resettlement of refugees with disabilities in two of the top five resettlement countries in the world, Germany and Canada. There is limited research on the intersection of migration and disability, especially in the context of refugee resettlement. The review describes settlement programs in each country. The authors draw from the global literature around forced migration and disability, as well as disability and migration more broadly in each country, to enhance the limited existing research and conduct an intersectional analysis at the level of systems, discourses, and subjective narratives. Findings highlight three dominant themes that weave across all three levels: being a “burden” on society, being invisible, and agency and resistance. Finally, drawing from the theoretical stance of Disability Studies, critical and holistic integration theories, the authors discuss how this intersectional analysis highlights the importance of reshaping the policies, discourse and definition of integration, and the consequences this can have on research, service delivery, and evaluation of integration and resettlement.

Weidinger, T. (2021): Onward (Im)Mobilities and Integration Processes of Refugee Newcomers in Rural Bavaria, Germany. Erlanger Migrations- und Integrationsstudien 8. FAU University Press: Erlangen. This cumulative PhD thesis, comprised of five articles, sought to better understand the onward (im)mobilities and integration processes of refugee newcomers in rural areas in Germany, focusing on rural specificities in terms of settlement and integration. Accordingly, the analysis drew on the discursive framing of refugee settlement processes in rural areas, the residential and everyday (im)mobilities of refugee newcomers in rural areas, and the characteristics of mechanisms of socio-spatial exclusion and inclusion of forced migrants in rural areas in terms of everyday mobility and access to housing. Methodologically and ethically, the project aimed to develop and enhance research tools that can give voice to refugee newcomers and better integrate them into research processes.

Shapiro, S. (2021). Altruistic capital and refugee-background youth: Creating educational counter-stories and opportunities. Linguistics and Education. This theory-based article argues that the theme of altruism should be a central focus of educational research and practice with refugee-background (RB) students and families. The author suggests that altruistic capital, as a form of community cultural wealth (CCW), can be part of counter-storytelling oriented in Critical Race Theory (CRT), which can challenge deficit-oriented “master narratives” about RB students. The author draws on data from previously published research to illustrate the prevalence and power of altruistic capital in RB students’ lives. Finally, the article includes a heuristic of questions that can guide educational policy, instructional practice, and future research with RB students and other marginalized groups.

Chatty, D. (ed.)(2021). Special issue: Displaced Syrians. Journal of Refugee Studies 34(2). The articles presented here in this special issue on Displaced Syria emerged from a workshop held at The Institute of New York University in Abu Dhabi in March 2019. It aims to encourage an examination of the perceptions and aspirations of displaced Syrians and practitioners in hosting countries in the Levant, the Gulf, and in Europe with particular attention to the voices of the displaced, their reimagining of home and homeland, and the emerging transnational sense of identity and belonging.

Loftsdóttir, K. (2021). We Are All Africans Here: Race, Mobilities, and West Africans in Europe. Berghahn Books, New York. This book looks critically at the racialization of mobility in Europe, anchoring the aspiration of precarious migrants from Niger in Belgium and Italy. It contextualizes their experiences within the ongoing securitization of mobility in their home country and the persistent denial of racism and colonialism in Europe. The book is available in hardback and eBook, and the introduction can be read here

Briefs, Reports and Resources

Donald Kerwin, José Pacas, and Robert Warren. Ready to Stay: A Comprehensive Analysis of the US Foreign-Born Populations Eligible for Special Legal Status Programs and for Legalization under Pending Bills, Center for Migration Studies, December 2021. This report offers estimates of US foreign-born populations that are eligible for special legal status programs and those that would be eligible for permanent residence (legalization) under pending bills. It seeks to provide policymakers, government agencies, community-based organizations (CBOs), researchers, and others with a unique tool to assess the potential impact, implement, and analyze the success of these programs. The report views timely, comprehensive data on targeted immigrant populations as an essential pillar of legalization preparedness, implementation, and evaluation. The report and the detailed estimates that underlie it, represent the first attempt to provide a detailed statistical profile of beneficiaries of proposed major US legalization programs and special, large-scale legal status programs.

Craig Damian Smith, Sean Rehaag, and Trevor C. W. Farrow. Access to Justice for Refugees: How Legal Aid and Quality of Counsel Impact Fairness and Efficiency in Canada’s Asylum System. SSRN, December 7, 2021. This report presents findings from a study exploring relationships between refugee legal aid, quality of counsel, the fairness and efficiency of asylum procedures, and access to justice for refugee claimants in Canada. This report aimed to understand how access to legal aid affects access to justice for claimants. This study employed a multi-method approach to collect data from stakeholder groups across Canada’s asylum system, including surveys, semi-structured interviews, and focus groups. Findings demonstrated that refugee claimants in Canada experience significant barriers to justice, which often begin at the outset of their procedures and persist through the asylum process. Representation rates are currently higher than for other tribunals, though funding for legal aid remains precarious over the mid and long-term. In that context, our most important finding is that the quality of representation is an urgent and long-standing issue. This issue currently has more significant impacts on efficiency, outcomes, and access to justice than the inability of claimants to secure counsel.

Regina Jefferies. Comparative perspectives on airport asylum procedures before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law, December 2021. This Policy Brief examines how different countries have dealt with international protection needs during the pandemic and provides guidance moving forward. It does so by reviewing the pre-pandemic use of airport asylum procedures in seven different countries (Australia, Canada, Costa Rica, Germany, Uganda, and the United States) and those countries’ subsequent use of border restrictions and/or closures in response to COVID-19. Reviewing a range of approaches, highlights persistent issues of transparency, procedural fairness, and accountability that pre-date – but have been exacerbated by – the pandemic. Finally, for measures suspending or limiting air travel, it identifies several recommended practices to ensure that States continue to meet their international protection obligations towards refugees and asylum seekers while also responding to public health concerns.

As part of a collaboration between CCR, CARFMS, CRS, and IASFM, several reference documents related to ethical considerations for research with people in forced migration have been developed. Your Rights in Research is an information sheet available in 20 translations for people who are asked to participate in research. It is intended to explain some of the vocabulary found in standard consent forms in lay person’s terms. It also outlines key considerations and resources, with particular attention to lived experiences of newcomers. The translations were funded by SSHRC and uOttawa and completed by Access Alliance Language Services, Ayar Ata, and Ulrike Krause, and collaborators. The CCR website has the ethical guidelines, the executive summary (with checklist), and most of the translations of “Your Rights in Research” in both English and French. Finally, the IASFM website has the International Code of Ethics in English, French and Spanish.

Sahar Atrache. Lebanon’s Deepening Crisis: The Case for a Sustainable Aid Response. Refugees International, December 2, 2021. Lebanon’s political and economic collapse has left hundreds of thousands of Lebanese and Syrian and Palestinian refugees struggling to make ends meet. At present, international and national aid organizations are striving to address the urgent needs of those disproportionally hit by the crisis. But humanitarian actors have neither the mandate nor the capacity to address root causes of the situation. Still, donors and international aid agencies should focus on durable solutions and make sure that their efforts address state capacities, are transparent, and empower local actors.

Lifesaving Humanitarian Response for Women and Girls in Afghanistan: An Urgent Call for U.S. Action. Refugees International, December 10, 2021. Violent conflict, a devastating drought, and food insecurity affecting over half the population in Afghanistan are driving one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world. Assessments indicate this emergency will exponentially grow as Afghanistan’s economy teeters on the edge of total collapse and the country remains almost entirely dependent on external aid. Urgent action is needed to address the looming famine and avert a humanitarian catastrophe that will impact women and girls and other marginalized groups the most.

News and blog posts

Sandra Sanchez, ‘Denial of Asylum Often Depends on the Region in Which Migrants Live, Report Finds’, Border Report, December 17, 2021. According to a Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) report, asylum seekers’ chances of prevailing in their cases vary dramatically based on where they live. The report finds that immigration courts in New York, San Francisco, Baltimore, Chicago, and Arlington, Virginia grant asylum at higher rates, based on an analysis of 223,469 total asylum decisions from 62 immigration courts and 492 immigration judges nationwide from 2016 to 2021. Conversely, courts in Houston, Atlanta, Oakdale, California, and Los Fresnos, Texas had some of the highest denial rates in the nation. TRAC also offers data on individual judges.

Madeline Gleeson, Australia’s asylum policy has been a disaster. It’s deeply disturbing the UK wants to adopt it. The conversation, December 7, 2021. Recently, at least 27 people drowned after their inflatable dinghy capsized while trying to cross the English Channel to the UK. While British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he was “shocked and appalled and deeply saddened” by the tragedy, it will no doubt spur on efforts to rush through the country’s much-maligned Nationality and Borders Bill. This bill, which is being debated in the UK parliament again this week, seeks, among other things, to “deter illegal entry into the United Kingdom”. The sense of urgency mounting around this issue does not sweep aside the need for reasoned and rational policymaking.

Digital and social media

Seminar Series: Race, Borders, and Global (Im)mobility (January 19, 2022 – March 9, 2022) convened by Dr. Hanno Brankamp, Departmental Lecturer in Forced Migration, Refugee Studies Centre, University of Oxford. This series critically interrogates how militarized borders, migration enforcement, and racial orderings continue to be normalized globally. Speakers in this series come from a range of disciplines and will examine global migration through questions of race and racism, coloniality, nationalism, citizenship, belonging, criminalization, and bordering. The first seminar of the series, Immigration Controls, Captivity and Reproductive Injustice in Britain: Punishing illegalized migrant women from the Global South and separating children from their mothers by Monish Bhatia (Birkbeck University of London), will focus on how race, gender, class, sexuality, marital and migration status intersect to oppress, control and discipline poor and illegalized single migrant mothers and pregnant individuals from the Global South. Register for the first Seminar of the series on Wednesday, January 19, 2022, 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm UK time here.