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International Refugee Research Project

International Refugee Research Project

We are dedicated to expanding the study of the realities of the refugee condition in order to improve them.

Refugee Research Issue 1 Cover

The Virginia Tech International Refugee Research Project was launched in 2016, as a result of conversations among several international partners interested to join their research capacity and inform policy about the realities of the refugee condition. Scholars, students and alumni from Virginia Tech, Bundeswehr University in Munich, and University of Kent in Brussels agreed to undertake this research in an inter-disciplinary fashion.

In September 2018, the research project published it's first policy brief,  International Refugee Research: Evidence for Smart Policy.

About the Research

  1. Data collection and analysis to inform policy is the main goal of this project. The research team works on two year cycles:
    During the first year, institutional partners collect and analyse data in a preliminary phase of their research. They organize workshops or smaller events to report preliminary findings and seek advice from one another. Grassroots organizations working on refugee issues, policy-makers and other stakeholders are invited to participate and offer feedback from their direct service work with refugees.
  2. During the second year, institutional partners come together to report the results of their work. A policy brief is compiled by drawing on the main findings of the research, and offered to policy-makers, governmental and non-governmental agencies working with refugees, and other institutions as the case may be.

Research questions for the 2018-2020 cycle:

  1. Refugee integration in local communities; comparative studies.
  2. The role of philanthropy in refugee integration.

Research questions for the 2016-2018 cycle:

  1. Level of integration of refugees in local communities
  2. Economic impact of refugees on their communities
  • April 7 and 8, 2020: Second International Conference to report research findings. Location: Al-Hussein Bin Talal University Petra campus, Jordan. - This conference has been postponed due to the global pandemic. It will be rescheduled shortly.
  • June 6 – 7, 2019: Working meetings with international partners in Arlington and Blacksburg – Agenda
  • January 17, 2019: Data for Smart Policy – Refugee Research Policy Brief Launch. Hosted by the US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants 2231 Crystal City Dr. Arlington, VA
  • September 5, 2018: 10 am – 11 am: Data for Smart Policy Brief Launch.
  • July 2018: Refugee Project Presentation to the University Alliance for Refugees and At-Risk Migrants, at Rutgers University
  • March 2018: First conference to report findings held in Tutsing, Germany, at the Akademie fur Politische Bildung. A summary can be found here.
  • October 2017: First VT workshop was held at the Arlington Research Center in Virginia. A summary can be found here.
  • Virginia Tech School of Public and International Affairs
  • Virginia Tech Office of the Vice President for Outreach and International Affairs
  • Virginia Tech Global Forum on Urban and Regional Resilience
  • Akademie fur Politische Bildung, Tutsing (Germany)
  • Bundeswehr University, Munich (Germany)

If you wish to support this project, please contact Elia Amegashie at


Elia Amegashie


(Washington D.C. Metro Area)
900 N. Glebe Rd., 6th Floor VTRC
Arlington, VA 22203