Social cohesion in displacement: The state of play

Holloway, K. and Sturridge, C.
Publication language
Date published
01 Oct 2022
Lessons papers
Forced displacement and migration, Internal Displacement, Social protection
Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia

This paper provides an analytical foundation for a two-year project on social cohesion in displacement being carried out by the Humanitarian Policy Group (HPG) at ODI. The project will explore social cohesion between refugees and host communities, as well as within displaced communities. It details how social cohesion has been conceptualised and operationalised in displacement responses. It draws on a wide body of literature, including from academia, United Nations (UN) agencies, nongovernmental organisations (NGOs), think tanks, multilateral donors and governments. Each chapter of this paper identifies gaps, opportunities and subsequent implications for research, culminating in a series of specific research questions that provide a trajectory for the research project (though it may not be possible to answer all these questions).

This paper will be followed by a series of case studies addressing these questions, and a final report that seeks to address two fundamental questions:

• How important is social cohesion in displacement settings?

• What role should aid actors play in supporting the aspects of social cohesion that matter to displacement-affected communities?