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City of Refuge Toolkit

Lane, Giles; Georgiou, Myria; Dajani, Deena S; Kolbe, Kristina; Theodoropoulou, Vivi

This is a co-creative and participatory toolkit of relevance to researchers, civil society and institutions working with newcomers, migrants, refugees and those supporting them (citizen actors and organisations). 

The City of Refuge Toolkit aims to explore the needs these actors have: such as the resources they need, and the obstacles they face when they try to build inclusive, safe and equitable local and national communities and spaces. The toolkit brings people together to discuss and share their experiences, to build connections and find common ground. It asks participants to identify what an ideal City of Refuge would need to be a reality (the ‘ideal’ city of refuge could be adopted from neighbourhood-level to national level).

The toolkit contains:

  • Individual Tasksheets
  • Group/collaborative Worksheets
  • A Workshop Facilitation guide for working with refugees/newcomers
  • A Workshop Facilitation guide for working with citizen actors
  • A Materials Guide suggesting icons and images for stickers

It is available in four languages – Arabic, English, German and Greek.

The toolkit has been devised and created by Giles Lane, with Myria Georgiou, Deena S Dajani, Kristina Kolbe & Vivi Theodoropoulou.

About

The toolkit has been developed for the study of the city of refuge and to understand how cities are shaped through migration as spaces of hospitality, collaboration but also of exclusions and restricted rights. The tool can be used in different contexts and spaces – from neighbourhoods to cities and to countries, depending on users’ particular focus. The principle remains the same: to co-create knowledge with those directly involved in identifying what makes (and/or hinders) inclusive and diverse spaces of belonging in the context of migration.  

The methodological approach integrates and promotes the principle of co-creative knowledge production with the people involved in processes of migration, either as those moving or as those receiving them. More particularly, the toolkit invites participants in cities (also neighbourhoods and countries) at the aftermath of (forced) migration to record their own understanding of needs, resources and obstacles that make hospitable and inclusive spaces of belonging. It comprises nonlinear tools for producing collective knowledge and capacity among those affected by migration to identify needs, resources and obstacles, especially in their attempt to build collective projects and resist exclusions from rights and resources on the basis of nationality and origin. 

The toolkit particularly challenges the linearity of narratives that have been privileged in representations of migrant and refugee voices, which are often narrowly defined through either “the refugee as a victim” or “migrants as assets for the economy”. Furthermore, the integration of visual tools in the toolkit aims to integrate participants’ diversity in terms of gender, linguistic and literacy skills. The different tropes used in the toolkit invite participants to work collectively and nonlinearly by writing, drawing and using stickers; in this way, the toolkit aims to tackle hierarchies among research participants, which lineal and fully narrational methods can reproduce.

Translations

Arabic – Dr Deena S Dajani
German – Kristina Kolbe
Greek – Dr Vivi Theodoropoulou

The City of Refuge Toolkit is published by Proboscis, and is an output of the "Resilient Communities, ResilientCities: digital makings of the city of refuge" project – funded through the LSE's Institute of Global Affairs (IGA) as part of the Rockefeller Resilience Programme.

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