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  • Alchemy field report on FCC micro credit programs to refugees in Mozambique

    27 January 2014

    This paper is a report by an Alchemy intern at Fundo de Credito Communtario (FCC) in Mozambique for the summer of 2004. The report consists of five sections. The first section briefly outlines the current environment surrounding refugees in Mozambique and the refugee policy of Mozambican government. The next section explains micro credit lending program of FCC in Mozambique, with emphasis on its Refugee Integration Program (RIP), as well as FCC’s lending stance in its program. In the third section, the paper evaluates the impact of FCC’s micro credit lending program in Maputo based on the latest results of Alchemy interviews with FCC RIP clients and non-clients. Then, it presents recommendation and proposals for FCC and concludes with prospective direction of FCC.

  • 'Repatriation is not for everyone': the life and livelihoods of former refugees in Liberia

    27 January 2014

    The international refugee regime presents repatriation as the most optimal, most feasible of the three durable solutions. Nevertheless, the number of studies which have followed up the process of the reintegration of returnees to their country of origin is scant. This paper will therefore investigate the repatriation of Liberian refugees from Ghana and their economic adjustments upon return using detailed case studies.

  • The Unworthy Citizen

    6 October 2017

    Chapter 11 in 'Within and Beyond Citizenship' (edited by R Gonzales and N Sigona). About the book: Within and Beyond Citizenship brings together cutting-edge research in sociology and social anthropology on the relationship between immigration status, rights and belonging in contemporary societies of immigration. It offers new insights into the ways in which political membership is experienced, spatially and bureaucratically constructed, and actively negotiated and contested in the everyday lives of citizens and non-citizens. Themes, concepts and ideas covered include: The shifting position of the non-citizen in contemporary immigration societies; The intersection of human mobility, immigration control and articulations of citizenship; Activism and everyday practices of membership and belonging; Tension in policy and practice between coexisting traditions and regimes of rights; Mixed status families, belonging and citizenship; The ways in which immigration status (or its absence) intersects with social cleavages such as age, class, gender and ‘race’ to shape social relations. This book will appeal to academics and practitioners working in the disciplines of Social and Political Anthropology, Sociology, Social Policy, Human Geography, Political Sciences, Citizenship Studies and Migration Studies.

  • ‘We Need to Talk about Dublin’: responsibility under the Dublin System as a blockage to asylum burden-sharing in the European Union

    23 December 2014

    The possibility of burden-sharing in the distribution of responsibility for processing asylum claims across the European Union (EU) seems to come up against a blockage when weighed against the principles and institutional practice underlying the Dublin system, the EU mechanism laying down the criteria determining the Member State responsible for processing an asylum claim. Understanding that blockage invites one to critically engage with the reasons why Member States have been reluctant to question Dublin as a policy option throughout the evolution of the Common European Asylum System (CEAS). This paper explores this question by evaluating the Dublin system as a carrier of embedded interests which make it less likely for Member States to allocate processing responsibility on the basis of burden-sharing. It examines the Dublin system’s objectives, and its appropriateness in delivering them, under three tenets: deflection, efficiency and control. The paper submits that the mechanism’s peculiar interpretation of processing responsibility accounts for its failure to deflect asylum claims by creating incentives for defection from the allocation criteria, as well as by prompting courts to halt transfers to external border Member States intended to receive the bulk of applications. The efficiency objectives of rapid processing of asylum claims and prevention of multiple applications and ‘asylum shopping’ are also not appropriately met, as the Dublin system causes significant delays in the processing of applications and provides asylum seekers with incentives to engage in irregular secondary movement. This built-in failure seems to reveal the symbolic objective of asserting control over entrants in their territory as the primary interest behind Member States’ support for Dublin.

  • Humanitarian innovation and refugee protection

    7 January 2016

    About the Book: This book seeks to think differently about what we recognize as "global institutions" and how they could work better for the people who need them most. By so doing, the contributions show that there is a group of institutions that influence enough people’s lives in significant enough ways through what they protect, provide or enable that they should be considered, together, as global institutions. The United Nations, the World Bank, the internet as well as private military and security companies leave a heavy footprint on the social, political and economic landscape of the planet. We are all aware in different ways of the existence of these global institutions but their importance in achieving change in the twenty-first century is often underestimated. In this book, contributors seek to explain what associations exist between change in global institutions and the reduction of poverty and inequality as well as the achievement of security and justice. The work makes sense of processes of change and identifies the most significant obstacles that exist, offering suggestions for future action that will be of interest to students and scholars of global institutions.

  • Open wallet, closed doors: exploring Japan’s low acceptance of asylum seekers

    7 January 2016

    Even as forced displacement has reached an unprecedented scale globally, with war in Syria, violence and political instability in parts of Africa and the Middle East, and persecution in Asia and South America sending millions fleeing within and beyond their countries, Japan has remained largely untouched. While Japan in 2014 witnessed a record number of asylum applications since its 1981 ratification of the 1951 Refugee Convention, the numbers remain small and the approval rate is extremely modest. Of the 5,000 individuals who filed for asylum in 2014, just 11 were granted refugee status—a 0.2 percent acceptance rate. In total, Japan was home to nearly 12,500 refugees, asylum seekers, and stateless persons as of December 2014, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). Asylum seekers with pending applications for refugee status comprised the vast majority. While its acceptance of refugees and asylum seekers is very limited, Japan is one of the most generous countries in terms of financial contributions to support international humanitarian efforts. The world’s third largest economy, Japan in 2014 was the fourth largest donor to UNHCR, providing more than US $181 million. And Prime Minister Shinzo Abe pledged a further $1.6 billion at the UN General Assembly in September 2015 to fund new assistance for refugees and internally displaced persons in Syria and Iraq, as well as peace-building efforts in the Middle East and Africa. Despite its financial generosity, Japan has gained a reputation as a closed country to refugees….

  • Economic reintegration of returnees in Liberia

    7 January 2016

    Since the early 2000s, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization has been implementing economic recovery programmes for returnees in certain post-conflict countries. It remains uncertain, however, to what extent these training programmes have been instrumental in returnees’ economic reintegration. Liberia has gradually been recovering from the social and economic damage caused by fourteen years of brutal civil war, between 1989 and 2003, which forcibly displaced about 700,000 Liberians outside the country. A significant number of Liberians repatriated following the final ceasefire agreement in 2003; and in 2012, when the UN High Commissioner for Refugees invoked the Cessation Clause, tens of thousands of the remaining refugees returned. Liberia’s limited infrastructure and weak economic foundation, however, have caused concern about its capacity to successfully integrate the new arrivals.

  • Book Review: Displacement economies in Africa: paradoxes of crisis and creativity

    7 January 2016

    Given the scarcity of conceptual work on the economic lives of displaced populations, Displacement Economies in Africa: Paradoxes of Crisis and Creativity, edited by Amanda Hammar, is a welcome contribution. The main question of this collection is: What does displacement generate in terms of economies? As the subtitle of the book suggests, the concept of ‘paradox’ is key to unpacking this question. While displacement often dismantles people’s pre-existing capital, networks, and expertise, a range of new relationships, socio-economic spaces, and creative strategies can also emerge from experiences of dislocation. Drawing upon empirical studies across Sub-Saharan Africa, this book sheds light on these paradoxical simultaneities – destruction and creation, loss and gain, despair and hope, and confinement and mobility – that human displacement produces in different contexts.

  • The Migration–Displacement Nexus: Patterns, Processes, and Policies

    12 August 2014

    The “migration-displacement nexus” is a new concept intended to capture the complex and dynamic interactions between voluntary and forced migration, both internally and internationally. Besides elaborating a new concept, this volume has three main purposes: the first is to focus empirical attention on previously understudied topics, such as internal trafficking and the displacement of foreign nationals, using case studies including Afghanistan and Iraq; the second is to highlight new challenges, including urban displacement and the effects of climate change; and the third is to explore gaps in current policy responses and elaborate alternatives for the future.