Refugee Economies: Rethinking Popular Assumptions

The report is one of the most pivotal reports of the generation as it looks at the economic life of refugees and the fundamental challenges that they face with the existing models of refugee assistance.

Based on participatory and mixed methods research with about 1,600 surveys in Uganda, the research has seen the full impact of the problem, and it has seen that while there is a full system that allows refugees to have the right to work and the freedom of movement, there are wider implications on the refugees in real life.

Refugees are not mere disruptions to an economic system. They allow creating unique contributions to the host economies, and there is now a need to debunk the belief on the following refugee myths:

  • Refugees are not to be isolated from the host population, but there should be an interaction between the two.
  • Refugees are not a burden to the host economy.
  • Refugees are not homogenous.
  • Refugees are not technologically illiterate as they also gave their advancement in whatever economy they are in; and
  • Refugees are not dependent on humanitarian assistance, and they have their own set of skills and capabilities that makes them productive members of society.