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Analysis of solutions programming in urban contexts

Research studies and reports I March 2018

ReDSS analysis of solutions programming in urban contexts focuses on urban refugees in Nairobi, Kenya and IDPs and refugee-returnees in Mogadishu and Baidoa in Somalia. The report aimed to better understand and address displaced people’s vulnerabilities and aspirations in urban centers and to rethink support in more sustainable and empowering ways. The methodology was based on participatory and consensus building approach including consultations and validation workshops with displacement affected communities, policy makers and practitioners.
The displacement environment in the Horn of Africa is primarily one of encampment however increasingly internally displaced persons (IDPs), returning refugees and to a lesser extent refugees are moving to towns and cities. Kenya for instance hosts some 65,000 urban refugees (or 13% of its total refugee population). In Somalia, over 2 million children, women and men are internally displaced. Most people displaced by drought left rural parts of Bay, Lower Shabelle, and Sool and settled in urban areas such as Mogadishu and Baidoa. The population of Baidoa has doubled in the past 12 months.

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Early solutions planning and Displacement

Research studies and reports I December 2016

Current studies and literature have argued that strategies for solutions should start at the onset of displacement. Solutions planning is most commonly initiated after displacement becomes protracted, by which point refugees are often dependent on humanitarian assistance. Given the unlikelihood of return or resettlement in the early stages of displacement, a solutions-oriented approach must inevitably have a primary focus on building refugee self-reliance and resilience in the country of asylum. Adopting a more solutions-oriented approach in the early stages of displacement is dependent on making a number of wide-ranging improvements on how displacement is responded to and who is involved. These improvements relate to a number of operational factors, including better forecasting of displacement and preparedness; more collaborative humanitarian and development approaches to assessment and analysis and the development of joint, measurable outcomes for refugee-hosting areas; and more flexible, multi-year funding sources to support the achievement of these outcomes.

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Review of durable solutions initiatives in East and Horn of Africa

Research studies and reports I June 2016

11.7 million people were displaced in the region at the end of February 2016, mostly in Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia and Ethiopia. Displacement results from a combination of conflicts, climatic and development shocks driven by poor governance, environmental degradation, food insecurity, and lack of economic opportunities. The lack of a common system, unclear coordination, and missing evidence base, are key structural challenges to finding durable solutions. Over the last decade, key stakeholders have been seeking to unlock solutions through new initiatives and ideas – all of which have been detailed in this report. These initiatives provide fertile ground from which to learn and build a more comprehensive and collaborative agenda in the search for durable solutions in the region. This report explores the junctures at which these initiatives have come together or in some cases, have failed to do so, providing opportunities and entry-points into an actual durable solutions system.

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Devolution in Kenya

Research studies and reports I July 2015

The 2010 Constitution of Kenya enacted a process of devolution with wide ranging consequences on the nature of local governance and service delivery. This study assesses whether county governments can provide an opportunity to reach transitional solutions for refugees, recognising that any solution to displacement will require a community-based approach. Host communities and local populations require attention in planning for transitional and durable solutions, and hence county governments may also have a role to play in refugee affairs. In a heated political and security context framing refugee affairs in East Africa, there is an acute need for evidence-based strategies to find durable solutions. This is especially true in light of the “protracted situations of displacement”, by which refugees get “trapped in limbo (…) having been in exile for more than five years with no immediate prospect of finding a durable solution for themselves.”

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A new deal for Somalia's displaced

Research study and report I November 2014

The main objective of this report was to take stock of potential opportunities for promoting durable solutions for displaced people in the Somalia New Deal Compact. This was done by identifying displacement in Somalia’s development discourse; and assessing stakeholder engagement in the Compact. This presents a unique opportunity to emphasise the importance of displacement in development and stability frameworks. The study will clarify what the Somali Compact says about displaced communities in the country, its implementation, and how INGOs can engage constructively with the New Deal Process in order to ensure that durable solutions is turned into a policy and operational priority. A follow-up to this study has been commissioned by UNHCR Somalia to build a clear roadmap for setting the agenda of displacement within the New Deal’s development discourse and move forward after the Copenhagen High-Level Political Forum conference to be held on the 19th and 20th November 2014.

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