May 14, 2020: 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. 86

Recent Publications and New Research

New Issue and Symposium: Hyndman, J., & Reynolds, J. (eds.) (2020). Beyond the Global Compacts. Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees, 36(1). This issue argues that while constructive and impressive in many respects, the global compacts are unlikely to shift the political and institutional frameworks that manage migration. Rather, the authors contend they will maintain the status quo whereby migration is encouraged to stay within Global South countries or people are turned away from state borders as they approach the Global North. The articles in this issue challenge the standard solutions and responses to displacement and migration. (Open access) Read here.

Shivakoti R. (2020) Protection or Discrimination? The Case of Nepal’s Policy Banning Female Migrant Workers. In: Joshi D., Brassard C. (eds) Urban Spaces and Gender in Asia. Sustainable Development Goals Series. Springer, Cham. This chapter introduces a policy that has been adopted by several Asian countries which bans female migrant workers from going to certain countries with the rationale of protecting them from possible harm and abuse. The chapter uses the case of Nepal to argue that governments use this policy despite knowing its lack of effectiveness in protecting women from abuse because it provides a short-term solution, allows for blame avoidance and because of their own limitation to influence another country’s laws to protect their migrant workers. Read here.

Reiko, S. (2019). Belonging in Translation: Solidarity and Migration Activism in Japan. Bristol University Press. This is the first book to investigate how migrants and migrant rights activists work together to generate new forms of citizenship identities through the use of language. This book is an original take on citizenship and community from the perspective of translation, and an amalgamation of theory and detailed empirical analysis based on ethnographic case studies of Japan. More here.

Report, Policy Briefs and Working Papers

Duale, M. (May 5, 2020) To be a refugee, it’s like to be without your arms, legs: a narrative inquiry into refugee Participation in Kakuma Refugee Camp and Nairobi, Kenya. The Local Engagement Refugee Research Network. Drawing from recent research in Kenya, the author argues there are significant disconnections between recent global refugee policy formulations and refugee experiences of participation. The objective of this working paper is to explore the experiences of refugees and refugee leaders in the Kakuma Refugee Camp and Nairobi, Kenya, and in doing so, to try to understand the role played by refugee-led organizations, particularly in the decision-making, planning and implementation of refugee programming. (Open access) Read here.

Global Report on Internal Displacement. (April 2020) Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre. This report highlights the scale of displacement around the world and efforts to address it and provides an overview of major regional patterns, impacts and risks. It also casts light on the highly specific nature of each displacement situation and discusses some of the collaborative steps and tools that could be used to help millions of Internally displaced people achieve a sustainable end to their predicament. Read here.

Migration Research Series No. 60 – Migrants and the COVID-19 pandemic: An initial analysis by Lorenzo Guadagno. (2020) IOM UN Immigration. This Migration Research Series paper offers an initial analysis of the specific ways migrants have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. It also presents the diverse measures which have been adopted in receiving and origin countries to prevent, mitigate and address the negative impacts of the pandemic. Its objective is to provide insights for more inclusive and effective COVID-19 responses as the pandemic unfolds to ensure that migrants are duly included. Read here.

Issue Brief: A Crisis on Top of a Crisis: COVID-19 Looms Over War-ravaged Idlib by Sahar Atrache. (April 2020) Refugees International. A new report from Refugees International details the province’s protracted humanitarian crisis, the state of the region’s decimated healthcare system, the roadblocks hindering the province’s response in the event of a COVID-19 outbreak, and recommendations for a path forward. Read here.

Issue Brief: Gender Matters: COVID-19’s Outsized Impact on Displaced Women and Girls by Devon Cone. (May 7, 2020) Refugees International. This report examines how COVID-19 exacerbates the challenges women and girls already face in displacement. The author explores the gendered impact of the pandemic on Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh, asylum seekers in Greece, IDPs in Syria and South Sudan, Venezuelans across Latin America, and forcibly displaced women and girls in other areas of the world. The author sets out the key steps that should be taken as part of the global pandemic response to protect displaced women and girls. Read here.

News reports and blog posts

The Challenges in Covid19 Times for Refugee Determination and Accessing Protection by Elspeth Guild. (April 28, 2020) Refugee Law Initiative on Refugee Law and Forced Migration. This blog examines the efforts of the EU (and associated countries including the UK) to comply with their obligations under the 1951 Refugee Convention, in particular, in regards to the processing of asylum applications. Read here.

Will COVID-19 finally force us to reconsider the Global (Im)mobility Regime? By Emilie McDonnell (April 16, 2020) Refugee Law Initiative on Refugee Law and Forced Migration. Given the impact of COVID-19 on human movement, it is pertinent to reflect more generally on how the global mobility regime is constructed, its incompatibility with several human rights, and how to limit the negative and counterproductive effects of COVID-19 restrictions. As the global community works to overcome this pandemic, we are presented with a unique opportunity to challenge and re-consider the global immobility regime. Read here.

Why Refugees are an Asset in the Fight Against Coronavirus by Alexander Betts, Evan Easton-Calabria and Kate Pincock. (April 28, 2020) The Conversation. Refugee-led organisations have long played an important but neglected role in providing protection and assistance to other refugees – and host communities – in camps and cities around the world. The authors argue the work of these refugee-led organisations is now more relevant than ever as the formal structures of humanitarian aid struggle to respond to the consequences of COVID-19. They are already doing life-saving work, and they need to be far better supported. Read here.

Digital and social media

Webinar series: The READY Initiative, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), the Center for Humanitarian Health at Johns Hopkins University and the Center of Education and Research in Humanitarian Action (CERAH) are hosting a weekly webinar series on COVID-19 and humanitarian settings. Past and upcoming webinars can be accessed here.

Migration working group virtual Meeting (May 27, 2020). The Migration Working Group offers the opportunity for researchers to present their ongoing projects, learn about each other’s work and share feedback. Discussions will be moderated by Anna Triandafyllidou, the Ryerson Canada Excellence Research Chair in Migration and Integration and a professor in the Department of Sociology at Ryerson University. Register here.

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