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Exploring the imaginations and experiences of the refugee crisis

Susanne Bygnes received a FRIPRO Young Research Talents grant for the project "Imagining and Experiencing the 'Refugee Crisis'" (IMEX). Bygnes is an associate professor at the Department of Sociology, University of Bergen. Bygnes is affiliated with DIGSSCORE, and will use the DIGSSCORE facilities for her project.

“Imagining and Experiencing the ‘Refugee Crisis’” explores the view of both arriving asylum seekers and local Norwegians. The project investigates how the recently arrived asylum seekers have imagined and experienced Europe. In addition, it examines how members of local communities in Norway imagine and experience the arrival of the refugee crisis to Europe and to local communities in Norway. The project will rely on fieldwork, in-depth qualitative interviews, focus-groups and data from a large scale nationally representative survey, the Norwegian Citizen Panel.

To examine the imaginations and experiences of members of local communities in Norway when it comes to the arrival of the refugee crisis to Europe, Bygnes will use the Norwegian Citizen Panel, as it gives her opportunity to study questions about minority-majority relations and the establishment of new refugee facilities with data from a large scale nationally representative survey. These questions will also be studied through in-depth interviews with Norwegian citizens.

In a pilot-project, during the winter 2015/spring 2016, Bygnes collected data through the Norwegian Citizen Panel. The findings show that among those who did not have an asylum centre in their neighbourhood, only four in ten thought it would be okay if an asylum center were to be established. Whereas among those who already had an asylum centre in the neighbourhood, six in ten thought it was okay.

Bygnes and her team will also conduct focus groups at the DIGSSCORE facility, where they will use the multimedia Citizen Lab to develop innovative new qualitative research techniques. 

To follow the IMEX-project, go to their webpages.