Mapping stories: GIS as an ethnographic approach to research with displaced Syrian refugee families living in Lebanon

Authors: Bree Akesson*,
Topics: Migration, Human Rights, Middle East
Keywords: migration, displacement, refugee, family, children, mobility, GIS, ethnography
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/12/2018
Start / End Time: 5:20 PM / 7:00 PM
Room: Napoleon D3, Sheraton 3rd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Approximately 6.5 million Syrians have been displaced within Syria and an additional three million have been exiled as refugees in neighboring countries. Due to the sudden arrival of large numbers of Syrian families, refugee sites have developed rapidly, without attention to the socio-spatial implications of the refugee camp for children and families. This research explores the everyday mobilities of children and families living in Lebanon. Using a variety of data gathering methods including collaborative family interviews, GIS-tracked neighborhood walks, and GIS-tracking of everyday mobility, the research methodology encourages children and family voices, allowing for an exploration of family networks, relationships, and environments that are impacting their lives in the context of war and displacement. In addition to shedding light on the everyday realities of refugees, this research suggests solutions to the challenges impeding physical and psychosocial well-being for war-affected children and families.

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