Today, Research Affiliate Maja Horvat presented the findings from an I2UD research project on the Croatian response to the European Refugee Crisis today at the conference “Camp, Train Station, Border: Microstudies of Refugees in Contemporary Croatian Context” in Zagreb, Croatia. This conference is organized by the Center for the Study of Ethnicity, Citizenship and Migration (CEDIM), the Center for Peace Studies (CMS), the Welcome Initiative & the Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Research. Ms. Horvat presented on the research project was carried out by I2UD from January to May 2016 with generous support from International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) focusing on local authorities’ and communities’ involvement in the crisis. If you’re in Zagreb, you can still catch a discussion of comparative politics of integration tomorrow from 11:00 – 13:00. The conference program and abstracts of each speaker are available at the link to the left.
The I2UD team, composed of Maja Horvat, Maren Larsen, and Elma Demir explored the actual and potential role of municipalities and urban areas in the response to the refugee crisis in Croatia in light of increasing interest among humanitarian practitioners to collaborate with local authorities to enhance effective assistance. A full working paper will be published this summer and explore concepts such as de-localizing the crisis through centralized response and de-territorializing response through the establishment of transit centers. While local authorities were relatively marginal actors in the Croatian response, the authors outline the greater role that they can play as Croatia begins to resettle asylum seekers and refugees transferred to the country.