November 15, 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. 75

Recent Publications and New Research

Adamson, F. B., & Tsourapas, G. (2019). The Migration State in the Global South: Nationalizing, Developmental, and Neoliberal Models of Migration Management. International Migration Review. This article identifies Hollifield’s “migration state” as a useful tool for comparative analysis yet notes its limitation given its focus on economic immigration in advanced liberal democracies. The authors suggest extending the “migration state” concept by introducing a typology of nationalizing, developmental, and neoliberal migration management regimes. The article explains each type and provides illustrative examples. Available at:

Sterett, S. M., & Walker, L. D. (Eds.). (2019). Research Handbook on Law and Courts. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing. The Research Handbook on Law and Courts provides a systematic analysis of new work on courts as governing institutions. The authors consider how courts have taken on regulating fundamental categories of inclusion and exclusion, including citizenship rights. Authors discuss theoretical, empirical and methodological approaches to studying courts as governing institutions. They also identify promising areas of future research. Available at: 

Turner, L. ‘#Refugees can be entrepreneurs too!’ Humanitarianism, race, and the marketing of Syrian refugees. Review of International Studies, 1-19. This article argues that the designation of Syrian refugees as ‘entrepreneurs’ is a positioning of Syrians within colonial hierarchies of race that pervade humanitarian work. For many humanitarian workers in Jordan, Syrians’ ‘entrepreneurship’ distinguishes them from ‘African’ refugees, who are imagined as passive, impoverished, and dependent on humanitarian largesse. Without explicit racial comparisons, humanitarian agencies simultaneously market Syrian refugees online as ‘entrepreneurs’, to enable them to be perceived as closer to whiteness, and to thereby render them more acceptable to Western audiences and donors, who are imagined as white. This article extends scholarly understandings of the understudied relationship between race and humanitarianism. Available at:

Lin, Vivian Wenli, Julie Ham, Guolin Gu, Merina Sunuwar, Chunya Luo, and Laura Gil-Besada. (2019). “Reflections through the Lens: Participatory Video with Migrant Domestic Workers, Asylum Seekers and Ethnic Minorities.” Emotion, Space and Society 33. This article explores the reflexive use of emotion in understanding emerging relational rhythms in participatory video. The focus of the analysis is the Visualizing the Voices of Migrant Women Workers project, which involved a series of eight video-making workshops from February–April 2017 in Hong Kong for over 40 domestic workers, asylum seekers, and ethnic minority participants. The emotions that were key to navigating relational rhythms central to this creative space were (1) feelings of discomfort to understand relations between the workshop participants and the facilitation team, (2) gratitude to assess the ‘chemistry’ or relations between workshop participants and (3) trepidation to re-write participants’ relations with the city of Hong Kong. There is an important opportunity to explore the role of emotion in analysing relational rhythms in PV practice, in order to nurture creative solidarities and create new ethical potentialities. Available at: (free access until Dec 6).

Report, Policy Briefs and Working Papers

Müller-Funk, L. Adapting to staying, or imagining futures elsewhere: Migration decision-making of Syrian refugees in Turkey (October 24, 2019). International Migration Institute. This working paper examines the questions of how and why Syrian refugees in Istanbul and Izmir experience mobility and immobility. Drawing on the findings of a mixed-methods study conducted in 2018 it offers insights into the various perspectives of Syrians.  The findings of this study show a strong desire to return among the Syrian refugee population in Turkey, should the conflict come to an end. It also finds moderate aspirations to stay in Turkey, and a strong resistance to the idea of migrating to Europe. Available at:

Report: Immigrant and Refugee Settlement in Canada: Trends in Federal Funding by Jennifer Braun & Dominique Clément (University of Alberta) (Aug. 2019). This report is the product of a collaboration between the University of Alberta, the Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers (EMCN) and the Alberta Association of Immigrant Serving Agencies (AAISA). It is a comparative study of settlement landing rates and federal funding for immigration and settlement across Canada. The report is divided into three sections: section one examines settlement landing rates and patterns across the country as well as the breakdown of those rates according to immigration class (economic, family, refugee / humanitarian); section two compares federal funding for immigrants by province using data from the Ministry of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC); and section three provides data on federal funding for Service Providing Organizations (SPOs) by province. Full report available at:

News reports and blog posts

Munir, L. Discussion Series: Creative Methods of Dissemination in Forced Migration Research. The author emphasizes drawing from first-hand accounts of migration through art initiatives allowing outsiders to learn displacement narratives from displaced artists and also for artists to share with each other. Available at:

A Teen Refugee’s Brain May Be Disrupted More by Poverty Than Past Trauma by Pien Huang, PNR, Oct. 28. This piece reports on a study showing that high exposure to violence and symptoms of PTSD and anxiety about the future among the teens, doesn’t compare to the constant stress of being poor. Poverty seems to most interrupt the way their minds work. Read more: 

Nevertheless, Idlib’s women persist: Hiba Ezzideen, by Sarah Sheffer, Refugees International (September 5, 2019). This blog post directs the spotlight on Hiba Ezzideen a Syrian activist living as a refugee in Turkey who grew up in Idlib. It tracks her journey to empower women in the Middle East. More available at:

Digital and social media

Podcast: David FitzGerald on the Shrinking Avenues for Asylum, CMSOnAir: This episode features an interview with David FitzGerald, Professor of Sociology, and Co-Director of the Center for Comparative Immigration Studies at the University of California, San Diego around the concept of “remote controls,” new constraints on asylum seekers, and the impact of wealthy democracies closing their doors to migrants. Listen here:

Every Refugee Matters. The British Red Cross. (2019). This short film is part of a new social media movement, #EveryRefugeeMatters and it is nominated for the charity film awards. The aim is to change the conversation about refugees online. This film reveals the reality of life as a refugee and shows a female refugee as she attempts to rebuild her life one piece at a time. The key objective of the film was to increase UK support for refugees by mobilising online communities to share its message. Watch the video and follow the Facebook page at

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