Thursday 24 January 2019
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Princeton - 3 month ago

Sustainable Sanctuaries: The Economic Inclusion of Refugees

Alexander Betts, Professor of Forced Migration and International Affairs, University of Oxford.Contrary to popular belief, most refugees are not in Europe or North America. 85% of the world s refugees are hosted by low and middle-income countries. Historically, the default approach in these countries has been to assist refugees in camps, in which they are often denied the right to work. The assumption is that refugees represent an inevitable burden on host states rather than potential contributors to national development. This talk fundamentally challenges that assumption, arguing that the economic inclusion of refugees offers a pathway to sustainable refuge, with potential benefits to host communities, donor governments, and refugees themselves. Drawing upon mixed methods, participatory research in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Uganda, including an original first panel data set on the economic lives of refugees and host communities, the talk examines a series of questions relating to the economic, politics, and ethics of supporting the participation of refugees within the national economics of the host countries.

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