Sabine de Graaf (UCL) - 2017-18 Students

A Future in the Making: Waiting, Hoping and Networking. A research project on Syrian refugees in Greece navigating the uncertainties of their situation

This doctoral research sets out to gather an in-depth understanding of Syrian refugees’ notions of their future in relation to migration, to see how they “can create a good beyond what is presently given in their lives” (Robbins 2013: 458). Via twelve months of ethnographic fieldwork in Lesvos and Athens, Greece, I will study Syrian refugees’ ideas and imaginations of the future, and the knowledge they have regarding migration whilst living in protracted, temporary conditions.

Furthermore, I will inquire how Syrian refugees gather, produce and share knowledge via their personal and digital networks. By observing their online and social media presence, I will seek to understand how these interactions reflect, nurture and/or disrupt Syrian refugees’ notions of, and possibilities for, the future.

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