July 4, 2019: 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. 67

Recent Publications and New Research

The ETHICS issue, Forced migration review 61, June 2019. The 19 feature theme articles in this issue debate many of the ethical questions that confront us in programming, research, safeguarding and volunteering, and in our use of data, new technologies, messaging and images. Prepare to be enlightened, unsettled and challenged. This issue is being published in tribute to Barbara Harrell-Bond, founder of the Refugee Studies Centre and FMR, who died in July 2018. Contents and links to all articles available at: https://www.fmreview.org/node/5047  

Tay, A. K., et al. (2019). The culture, mental health and psychosocial wellbeing of Rohingya refugees: a systematic review. Epidemiology and psychiatric sciences, 1-6. This paper, drawing on a report commissioned by the UNHCR, aims to provide a comprehensive synthesis of the literature on mental health and psychosocial wellbeing of Rohingya refugees, including an examination of associated cultural factors. The ultimate objective is to assist humanitarian actors and agencies in providing culturally relevant Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) for Rohingya refugees displaced to Bangladesh and other neighbouring countries. Available at: https://www.cambridge.org/core/services/aop-cambridge-core/content/view/99E6633839E3F9A23E2B4A764472B79C/S2045796019000192a.pdf/culture_mental_health_and_psychosocial_wellbeing_of_rohingya_refugees_a_systematic_review.pdf

Robinson, D. B., Robinson, I. M., Currie, V., & Hall, N. (2019). The Syrian Canadian Sports Club: A Community-based Participatory Action Research Project with/for Syrian Youth Refugees. Social Sciences8(6), 163. In this paper, the authors share the rationale, process, and results related to a community-based participatory action research (PAR) project in which they aimed to attend to the underrepresentation of newcomer youth in community sport and recreation pursuits. Drawing upon multiple data sources (i.e., photos and photovoice, participants’ drawings and notes, participant-researchers’ field notes, and focus group interviews), the researchers and their Syrian youth participants co-created and implemented the Syrian Youth Sports Club. They focus on the results, which primarily relate to participants’ experiences becoming (physically literate) and belonging. Full text available at: https://www.mdpi.com/2076-0760/8/6/163/htm

Report, Policy Briefs and Working papers

Annual Report on the Situation of Asylum in the European Union 2018, The European Asylum Support Office (EASO), 24 June 2019. The Report is a flagship reference publication that aims to provide a comprehensive overview of the situation of asylum in the EU and the practical functioning of the Common European Asylum System (CEAS). As reported by EASO earlier this year, among other stats, the 664,480 applications for international protection in the EU in 2018 marked a decrease for the third consecutive year, this time by 10%. Additionally, although fewer positive decisions were issued overall, a higher proportion of positive decisions granted refugee status (55% of positive decisions). Syria (13%), Afghanistan and Iraq (7% each) were the three main countries of origin of applicants in the EU in 2018. The top 10 citizenships of origin also included Pakistan, Nigeria, Iran, Turkey (4% each), Venezuela, Albania and Georgia (3% each). Available at: https://easo.europa.eu/sites/default/files/easo-annual-report-2018-web.pdf

New global returns report: Achieving Durable Solutions for Returnee Children: What do we know? (2018). Save the Children and Samuel Hall. The report offers the first comparative child-focused analyses of conditions on return across four priority returns contexts: Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, and Syria, seeking to understand what these mean for reintegration. From these findings, it offers a series of recommendations that is hoped to expand our collective knowledge and improve standards of programming, policy, and advocacy in support of child returnees and their families. The report is a step forward to answering two questions: 1) how do we guarantee minimum standards for safe and dignified returns? 2) How can we measure the extent to which children have successfully reintegrated into their communities? Available at:


Solutions analyses update: Case study on lessons learnt and practices to support (re)integration programming – Mogadishu, Baidoa and Kismayo, ReDSS, March 2019. The report starts by reviewing progress and challenges related to durable solutions planning and programming. Discussion is structured around four key durable solutions programming principles: 1) area-based planning; 2) sustainable (re)integration; 3) collective outcomes and coordination; and 4) government engagement. It also includes eight case studies that reflect key lessons learnt from practice. The second part of the report offers an updated criteria rating for each of the locations based on the ReDSS Solutions Framework. Full report available at:


News Reports and Blog Posts

India Must Have a Sustainable Refugee Policy, RLI blog (July 1, 2019). In this RLI blog, Nafees Ahmad (South Asian University) considers why ‘India Must Have a Sustainable Refugee Policy’ and sets out a framework of best-practice principles to consider its development. Available at:


Amsterdam’s Hire-a-Refugee Program Takes On Tight Labor Market, By Ruben Munsterman, Bllomber (June 26, 2019). The Dutch capital launched a programme in 2016 that aims to solve two problems in the city: integrating thousands of refugees and addressing a lack of workers. Bloomberg reports that the “Amsterdam Approach” of encouraging businesses to hire refugees had helped 53 per cent of the city’s asylum-seekers who sought welfare benefits in 2014 find work by the end of last year. About 80 “client managers” – many of whom are migrants themselves – work with about 50 refugees each, helping them with asylum procedures, Dutch language lessons and finding work. Available at:


The Web, Digital and social media

Positive public opinion toolkit, Canadian Council for Refugees (CCR), May 28, 2019. This toolkit is intended to help us get better at sharing stories, initiating better conversations and driving more productive community narratives that involve those who came to Canada to seek refuge from persecution. The toolkit is comprehensive covering areas from identifying your audience to how to become an active listener and sharing stories. Download the complete toolkit at: https://ccrweb.ca/sites/ccrweb.ca/files/promoting-positive-opinion-toolkit.pdf

Webinar Series on the PSR Program for Groups of Five and Community Sponsors – RSTP (July 2019). RSTP will be conducting the following webinars in July 2019 on the PSR program for Groups of Five and Community Sponsors:

The above series of webinars will be repeated each month until March 2020.

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