A selection of articles with abstracts (June 2018)
Azarnert, L. (2017). Refugee resettlement, redistribution and growth, FIW Working Paper, No. 175.
This paper studies the effect of refugee resettlement on human capital accumulation. The analysis is performed in a growth model with endogenous fertility. I propose a redistribution scheme and show that refugee resettlement from a more advanced and wealthier economy to a less advanced and less wealthy economy combined with income transfers can give rise to conditions in which utility of indigenous populations in both countries increases. I also derive conditions for the proposed resettlement policy to stimulate human capital accumulation and hence economic growth in both economies. [open access]
Botfield, J. R., et al. (2018). “Learning about sex and relationships among migrant and refugee young people in Sydney, Australia: ‘I never got the talk about the birds and the bees’.” Sex Education: 1-16.
AbstractIn a multicultural nation such as Australia, it is important for young people from migrant and refugee backgrounds to have access to quality relationships and sexuality education, as they are known to be less well engaged with mainstream services. A study was undertaken to explore the complexities and opportunities for engaging this group with sexual and reproductive health information and care in Sydney, Australia. Interviews were undertaken with 27 migrant and refugee young people (aged 16?24 years), and 34 expert informants. Relationships and sexuality education was a dominant theme throughout both data sets. Nearly all young people reported that they were unable to discuss sexuality or sexual health with their parents, and most identified secondary school as the place where they first learned about these issues. Other sources of information were identified as the Internet, friends, health professionals and pornography. Participants appeared to have limited awareness of the different services available to them. Schools, as well as other education settings such as universities, private colleges and intensive English centres, are well placed to deliver relationships and sexuality education, and for migrant and refugee young people these may be valuable settings in which to access information rarely discussed in family or community environments.
El-Khani, A., et al. (2018). “Testing the feasibility of delivering and evaluating a child mental health recovery program enhanced with additional parenting sessions for families displaced by the Syrian conflict: A pilot study. .” Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology 24(2): 188-200.
Children who live through armed conflict and displacement are at increased risk of mental health difficulties, including posttraumatic stress (PTS). Parental support and monitoring are significant potentially modifiable factors amenable to preventive intervention. Children’s resilience can be increased by assisting parents and caregivers in supporting children. This study investigated the feasibility of delivering and evaluating an adapted version of the teaching recovery techniques (TRT) intervention, an established, evidence-based mental health recovery program for children, in a displacement setting resulting from the Syrian conflict. Three parent skills sessions were added to the original TRT intervention to form a brief, 5-week child plus parenting program (TRT + Parenting). Feasibility to recruit and train nonspecialist staff on the ground to screen families for eligibility, collect outcome data and deliver the intervention, and to recruit and retain families in the intervention and study were examined. Fourteen Syrian refugee families residing in a border town in Turkey took part in the study. Research staff and intervention facilitators were successfully appointed in the field, screened participants, and delivered the intervention, collecting outcome measures pre- and postdelivery. Supervision was provided via Skype and Whatsapp from the Unite Kingdom. All families completed the outcome measures, with very little missing data, and all of the intervention sessions, except for one family who moved to another location. This indicated that TRT + Parenting can be delivered feasibly and evaluated with displaced families in this humanitarian context. Preliminary outcome data showed promise that TRT + Parenting may have the potential to both reduce children’s PTS and increase caregivers’ parenting self-efficacy and use of effective strategies. Implications and future directions of the research are discussed.
Green, S. (2018). “‘All Those Stories, All Those Stories’: How Do Bosnian Former Child Refugees Maintain Connections to Bosnia and Community Groups in Australia?” Immigrants & Minorities 36(2): 161-177.
AbstractThis article draws on oral histories from my PhD research to explore how six teenagers, now adults, remember their arrivals in Australia as child refugees from Bosnia. It examines their relationships with other people from Bosnia and the former Yugoslavia, including community groups, and how these relationships have changed over time. In examining these narratives, issues of intergenerational differences are highlighted, with interviewees positioning their experiences in relation to both their parents and their second-generation peers. Finally, it explores how former refugees maintain their relationships with family and friends in Bosnia, suggesting that these transnational connections provide them with as much familiarity and comfort as they do feelings of alienation.
Harvey, G. (2017). “Deflection and Deterrence: Europe’s Shrinking Asylum Space and its Parallels with Australian Policies.” Griffith Journal of Law & Human Dignity 5(2): 143-164.
In 2015, as asylum seekers, refugees and migrants began making their way to Europe in larger numbers, the European Union set about putting policies in place to shut them out and protect its external borders. In the process, the protection of borders has become paramount to the protection needs of people, and policies have been designed to contain people in regions of origin, deterring the desire to reach Europe and deflecting responsibility for processing asylum claims to states elsewhere. The framing of resettlement as a reward for countries that cooperate, and people who wait, and the shifting of responsibility onto other states, where refugees cannot enjoy full rights, are reminiscent of Australia’s approach to asylum law and policy.
King, S. M. and L. Owens (2018). Great Expectations: African Youth from Refugee Backgrounds and the Transition to University. University Pathway Programs: Local Responses within a Growing Global Trend, Springer: 67-84.
Engagement in post-compulsory education is a means by which resettled refugees can gain social and economic mobility. Given the importance of education in shaping the futures of both individuals and societies, understanding the challenges facing students from refugee backgrounds and those involved in their education constitutes an important area of research. While such issues have received attention in primary and secondary school contexts, very little research has addressed these issues in higher education. This chapter examines the educational experiences and challenges associated with the transition to university for African youth from refugee backgrounds. It presents the perspectives of educators, social service providers, African students and African community leaders who participated in a qualitative investigation of the education and career pathways of African youth from refugee backgrounds. The chapter invites academics to reflect upon their experiences and challenges in teaching these students and to consider their own professional development needs with a view to better supporting these students. Recommendations are offered in an effort to identify key areas of support for academics and students in higher education.
McNevin, A. and A. Missbach (2018). “Luxury limbo: temporal techniques of border control and the humanitarianisation of waiting.” International Journal of Migration and Border Studies 4(1-2): 12-34.
In this article, we examine temporal techniques of border control including prolonged periods of waiting, stasis and indeterminacy that increasingly characterise the experience of refugees, asylum seekers and other irregular migrants. We argue that these temporal techniques are enhanced and legitimised by parallel efforts to improve accommodation for irregular migrants – a process we call the humanitarianisation of waiting. We focus on the Indonesian context, where growing numbers of refugees wait for resettlement elsewhere, whilst housed in non-custodial alternatives to detention. We show how the promotion of alternatives to detention as humane and pragmatic enables containment strategies pursued through migration management to persist under a cloak of benevolence. The result is a kind of ‘luxury’ limbo that refugees experience and through which it becomes harder to disentangle the managerial emphasis on migrant care from the more pernicious practices of border security. The paper’s analytical distinction between spatial and temporal techniques of border control illuminates the vexed politics of humanitarianism with respect to human mobility in the Indonesian context and beyond.
Naidoo, L., et al. (2018). School to University Transitions for Australian Children of Refugee Background: A Complex Journey. Transitions to Post-School Life: Responsiveness to Individual, Social and Economic Needs. M. Pavlova, J. C.-K. Lee and R. Maclean. Singapore, Springer Singapore: 81-103.
Despite strong overall growth in Australian university participation, the representation of individuals from low-socio-economic status (SES) background, as a proportion of the total student population, remains below parity. Indeed, the proportion of domestic undergraduate students studying in Australia decreased between 2001 and 2008 (Universities Australia, A smarter Australia: an agenda for Australian higher education 2013–2016. Universities Australia, Canberra, 2013). As a result of this decline, the federal government adopted a target that by 2020, approximately 20% of all students would be of low-SES origin. Many students in this low-SES category are of refugee backgrounds, and these numbers may accelerate in the future. For instance, in 2012–2013, 64% of applications for humanitarian status came from young people under the age of 30. Many refugee background students have high aspirations for educational attainment, a strong desire to succeed academically and demonstrate desirable attributes such as high levels of resilience and problem-solving capacities. However, forced migration, interrupted schooling and significant differences in teaching pedagogy represent major barriers to mainstream pathways to higher education. The pedagogic experience is different for various refugee groups based on the complexity of their journey to Australia and their response to the changes in demography. Refugees are not homogenous, and their life histories therefore cannot be reduced to deficit thinking about their ability to transition. This chapter examines findings from a recent large study of school-to-university transition which examined the barriers and challenges faced by refugee background students transitioning from Australian secondary schools to university. In particular, it focuses on the kinds of enabling practices and structures at school level, which supported this transition, drawing on vignettes to illustrate these pathways. It concludes that although there are examples of exemplary school practices to support transition to university, these pathways are not systemic and are too often dependent on the knowledge, excellent practice and good will of individual schools and teachers.
Reid, A. and A. Skuse (2018). “Acts of Last Resort: Asylum, Whistleblowing and the Anthropology of Secrecy.” The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology 19(2): 103-119.
Anthropologists face fresh challenges as they endeavour to conduct research in an increasingly securitised and secretive world. Those who wield asymmetrical power in society often seek to guard information and knowledge. Therefore, it is imperative that anthropologists seek new ways of navigating the politics of secrecy if they are to reveal anything of its inner workings. In pursuit of this imperative, this paper examines practices of whistleblowing and posits secrecy as a dialectic that is characterised by processes and practices that work towards concealment, as well as revelation. In shifting the analytical focus from that which is concealed to what is revealed in acts such as whistleblowing, we contend that anthropologists may elucidate something about secrecy that is revealing of context-specific forms of agency and power. In doing so, analysis draws upon Australia?s secretive immigration and border protection regime and in particular a recent government inquiry that enabled whistleblowers to reveal details of secrets that had previously been closely held.
Tran, G. T. T. (2018). “Sharing cultural values across generations in Vietnamese Australian families.”
The thesis is about sharing cultural values in Vietnamese Australian families. It presents findings from a qualitative study based on in-depth interviews with Vietnamese migrant parents from refugee and skilled migrant backgrounds, and Vietnamese Australian children. The study adds to the research aimed at increasing the understanding of cultural values of ethnic groups in Australia – in this case the process of whether and how Vietnamese cultural values persist in refugee and skilled migrant families. In particular, it highlights the roles of parents and children in the process of preserving and modifying cultural values in the migration context.
West, H. and R. Plunkett (2018). A Mapping of Refugee Resettlement Schemes. K4D Helpdesk Report. Brighton, UK: Institute of Development Studies., K4D Helpdesk Report. Brighton, UK: Institute of Development Studies.
A range of refugee resettlement efforts take place across all of the countries covered in this report. Common themes include the accepting of Syrian refugees for resettlement, collaboration with (but not always limited to) the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to identify eligible entrants, the existence of government-led national schemes and the presence of integration and settling services. Differences exist in the presence of private sponsorship and community-led schemes, eligibility criteria and country priorities.
Reflecting the structure of the report and in tabular format, a summary of comparative findings is below. The main body of the report is then organised on a country-by-country basis.
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