Critical localism: reflections on the localisation of humanitarian action in theory and (research) practice
Dr Kristina Roepstorff (Ruhr University Bochum)
Public Seminar Series
Wednesday, 26 May 2021, 5pm to 6pm
Hosted by Refugee Studies Centre
Public Seminar Series, Trinity term 2021
‘Localising’ Refugee Research and Practice
This public seminar series aims to examine research on refugees and forced migration within the broader localisation agenda, as well as methodological attempts to ‘localise’ refugee research through co-creating and co-conducting research with refugees and local hosts. Through a blend of practically-, methodologically-, and theoretically-focused seminars, this series aims to present current research designs and methodologies involving refugee and local researchers, and the challenges and opportunities that lie therein, as well as theoretical work reflecting on issues of ethics and power. Concomitant with these discussions will be ongoing examinations of the relationship between advocacy and scholarship, and the extent to which both can and should be met together.
Series convener: Dr Evan Easton-Calabria, Senior Research Officer
About the seminar
The humanitarian sector’s localisation agenda acknowledges the central role of local actors in all phases of the humanitarian response. There exists a general consensus that localisation will make humanitarian action not only more efficient and effective, but also address power imbalances prevalent in the humanitarian system. Little consensus exists, however, on the very definition of the 'local' or best ways to implement localisation in practice. Critically engaging with the problematic conceptualisation of the 'local' in binary opposition to the 'international', the talk introduces critical localism as a framework for research on localisation. The talk then shares findings from research conducted in Italy (Lampedusa) and Bangladesh (Cox’s Bazar). It concludes with methodological questions that came up during field research and that point towards the need for a decolonial research practice.
Watch the speaker's presentation on YouTube.
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