Workshop: Humanizing Trajectories in Refugee Research

What ontologies and epistemologies inform contemporary scholarship on refugees? Has the field of refugee studies lost its scholar-activist roots? What are the impacts of the policy-orientation of the field? Has it been led it to reflect contemporary states’ dehumanization of and hostility toward asylum-seekers and refugees? We argue that the current methodologies and foci of refugee studies limit the production of new and transformative knowledges that could have emancipatory impacts. This workshop seeks to join with existing radical research trajectories, and carve out new trajectories in refugee research that re-humanize people seeking refuge. We will explore how we can re-centre critical research in refugee studies. Can Critical Race Theory, and Postcolonial/Decolonial/anti-colonial/global Southism approaches bring fresh insights and point to more emancipatory scholarship on refugees? How might such approaches inform the field methodologies that researchers employ?

To dwell on these questions this workshop will include two panels, each followed by round-table discussion. The first panel will address critical epistemologies and approaches to refugee research(e.g. Critical Race Theory, and Postcolonial/Decolonial/anti-colonial/global Southism approaches), while the second will focus on Critical methodologies in refugee research and activism.

Panelists Include: Dr Nira Yuval-Davis (Centre for research on Migration, Refugees, and Belonging, University of East London); Dr Oliver Bakewell (Global Development Institute, University of Manchester); and Dr Patricia Daley (School of Geography and the Environment, University of Oxford)