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Creating Global Cities of Refuge: Moonshot Innovation for Refugee Well-Being

posted Jan 22, 2018, 3:54 AM by Sergiu Baltatescu   [ updated Feb 11, 2019, 1:39 AM by Sara Debora Topciu ]

Timothy P. Hagen 1

Journal of Social Research & Policy
Volume: 8, Issue: 1, pp. 33-53
Date: July 2017
ISSN: 2067-2640 (print), 2068-9861 (electronic)

Abstract: The current international refugee regime is well-intended yet tragically inadequate in response to the growing number of refugees. The situation of refugees in protracted refugee situations (PRS) is particularly concerning, as refugees in PRS often face severe restrictions on freedoms of work and mobility. In response, this paper adds to a growing literature calling for innovative, “moonshot” solutions to the refugee crisis and argues that a network of world-class cities and a form of sanctuary citizenship should be developed to provide a durable solution at scale to the problem of massive displacement and PRS. While the paper argues that current solutions of refugee return, integration, and resettlement should still be pursued, it also argues that those solutions are not yet adequately scaled up and a further option must be sought to address the plight of refugees, particularly those in long-term encampment. The paper responds to anticipated objections and seeks to change the narrative of refugees from being a burden, unwanted, and a threat to being valued individuals and communities who can contribute to their own prosperity, peace, and the larger human community.

Keywords: Refugee; Cities of Refuge; Innovation; Durable Solutions; Protracted; Sustainable. 


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Sara Debora Topciu,
Feb 11, 2019, 1:36 AM