Development and the ‘Right to Have Rights’ in Intra-African Refugee Resettlement




International Journal of Sociology



International migration has long been linked to development through hometown associations, remittances, and the brain drain/gain. These themes also carry over to work on forced migration where resettlement is viewed as the opportunity to obtain social and economic resources to remit to the country of origin or to those remaining in camps. Intra-African refugee resettlement seeks to invert and formalize the migration-development nexus. Instead of viewing development as the result of migration, it makes refugee resettlement a formal development program to benefit the country of resettlement and refugees. Using ethnographic data collected over a year at the Chogo intra-African resettlement in Tanzania and document analysis of United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, government of Tanzania, and resettlement nongovernmental organization reports and evaluations, I ask : (1) How do refugees become citizens, and how is this process related to development? (2) How was this process designed, implemented, and measured in Chogo, and what were the outcomes? My findings suggest that through intra-African refugee resettlement, definitions of citizenship and development are inextricably linked through what Timothy Mitchell has called “the objects of development.”

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