Migrant identity and chaos theory: new book chapter
Migration Across Boundaries: Linking Research to Practice and Experience is a new book that takes a multi-disciplinary approach to the developmental challenges of migration. DLP research fellow Suda Perera has contributed the chapter Method in the Chaos: Non-Linearity, Ephemerality and Refugee Identity, which highlights the value of greater analysis of migrants' identity.
She notes that this matters particularly when trying to deal with security concerns caused by or facing migrants who spend protracted periods in exile. She also discusses what happens when migrants establish themselves in a new country and then, in their turn, have to cope with the arrival of new migrant communities.
Suda argues that ‘chaos theory’ can help in understanding identity-formation in protracted refugee situations. This is the case especially in the less-studied context of mass migration into less developed countries by people fleeing conflict or disaster by crossing into neighbouring states. Such complex and shifting migration contexts can be hard to model, and Suda argues that here the ‘identity Process Framework’ inspired by physics’ chaos theory can be a useful tool.
Suda's chapter can be previewed in Google books.