Displaced people for sale

A multi-methodological research project on international refugee organizations’ public communication strategies on the Syrian and Central African refugee crises (2011-2018)​

While the world is currently facing one of the worst refugee crises of modern times, a growing number of countries are implementing increasingly restrictive refugee policies. Hence, public communication has become essential for refugee organizations in persuading the general public and states to engage in solidarity. As (international) refugee organizations significantly contribute to the public perception on refugee crises, this project critically investigates their public communication strategies. From a multi-method perspective, we scrutinize their discursive strategies on the recent Syrian and Central African crises. Acknowledging the rapidly changing mediascape, we focus on public communication in specific social contexts. We thereby pay particular attention to (1) the production process by means of interviews with these refugee organizations, (2) the practices of representing refugees, and (3) the reception of the public communication efforts by the civil audience, refugees and relevant journalists. Apart from its topical nature and relevance for a better understanding of the political, economic and cultural dimensions involved in international refugee organizations' public communication strategies, this project provides a significant and original empirical contribution to key debates in non-profit studies and the research field of international communication.