Research on the making, implementation and evaluation of global refugee policy has drawn on a range of methodologies and disciplinary traditions. Below are some sources on various methodological approaches, drawn from recent research on global refugee policy. Please let us know if you have other suggestions.

Are you conducting research on global refugee policy and have a question relating to methodology? You can post your question on our Methodology Question Board.


Araral, E. Jr., Fritzen, S., Howlett, M., Ramesh, M. and Wu, X. (eds.) Routledge Handbook of Public Policy, Abingdon: Routledge (2013).

Autesserre, Severine. The Trouble with the Congo: local violence and the failure of international peacebuilding. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (2010).

Bakewell, O. “Research Beyond the Categories: The Importance of Policy Irrelevant Research into Forced Migration.” Journal of Refugee Studies 21.4 (2008): 432-453.

Betsill, M and Corell, E. “NGO Influence in International Environmental Negotiations: A Framework for Analysis.” Global Environmental Politics 1.4 (2001): 65-85.

Betts, A. and Orchard, P. (eds.) Implementation in World Politics: How International Norms Change Practice. Oxford: Oxford University Press (2014).

Biersteker, T. J. “Constructing Historical Counterfactuals to Assess the Consequences of International Regimes.” Rittberger, V. (ed.) Regime Theory and International Relations, Oxford: Clarendon Press (1993).

George, A. and Bennett, A. Case Studies and Theory Development in the Social Sciences, Cambridge: MIT Press (2005).

Howlett, M. and Ramesh, M. Studying Public Policy. Policy Cycles and Policy Subsystems, Oxford, Oxford University Press (1995).

Kelley, J. “Toward a Foucauldian analysis of international regimes.” International Organization 44.1 (1990): 83-105.

Merry, S.E. “Human Rights Law and the Demonization of Culture (And Anthropology Along the Way).”Political and Legal Anthropology Review 26.1 (2003): 55-77.

Mosse, D. (ed.). Adventures in Aidland : the anthropology of professionals in international development. Oxford: Berghahn Press (2011).

Soroos, M. Beyond Sovereignty: The Challenge of Global Policy. Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina Press (1986).

Stone, D. “Global Public Policy, Transnational Policy Communities, and their Networks.” Policy Studies Journal 36.1 (2008).

Tetlock, P. E. and Belkin, A. Counterfactual Thought Experiments in World Politics: Logical, Methodological and Psychological Perspectives. Princeton: Princeton University Press (1996).

Vrasti, Wanda. “The strange case of ethnography and international relations.” Millennium-Journal of International Studies 37. 2 (2008).

Wiener, Antje. “Contested meanings of norms: a research framework.” Comparative European Politics 5. 1 (2007): 1-17.

Wiener, Antje. “Enacting meaning-in-use: qualitative research on norms and international relations.” Review of International Studies 35. 1 (2009): 175-93.


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