York researchers partner in $3.5-million refugee study

Four executive committee members of York University’s Centre for Refugee Studies (CFR) are successful co-applicants and collaborators in the Social Science and Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Partnership Grant, titled “Civil society and the global refugee regime: Understanding and enhancing impact through the implementation of global refugee policy.”  The project’s total budget is $3.5 million, with SSHRC contributing almost $2.5 million.

The York researchers include: sociology Professor Christopher Kyriakides; geography and social science Professor Jennifer Hyndman; social science, and public policy and administration Professor Dagmar Soennecken; and, psychology Professor Michaela Hynie.

York’s Centre for Refugee Studies has a long history not only of partnership with higher education and civil society organizations in the global east and south, but also in promoting an intersectional approach in which our key partners bring their diverse social and cultural histories to bare on exclusionary refugee reception practices and protocols,” said Kyriakides. “In this partnership, the York team is strategically placed to provide leadership in the key domains of intersectionality and civic inclusion.”

Directed by James Milner at Carleton University, the seven-year partnership will foster collaboration with higher education institutions in seven countries and civil society organizations in Canada, Jordan, Lebanon, Kenya and Tanzania. The project team will study efforts to implement global refugee policy in diverse places, identify factors that impact implementation and identify how civil society can contribute to improved outcomes for refugees.

York students will benefit from opportunities generated by the grant since the project will train 96 graduate students over seven years to work with local academics, students, NGOs and refugees. To build research and practitioner capacity, the group will host annual summer institutes in concert with the Centre for Refugee Studies (CRS) Summer Course at York and Carleton – both partner institutions in the grant – as well as train refugees and NGO workers in citizen journalism in the affected countries.