A-31/21 Local Integration as Durable Solution? Negotiating Socioeconomic Spaces between refugees and Host Communities in Rural Northern Uganda

With a growing number of displaced people, there is a need for robust approaches to coping with displacement. Uganda has a progressive refugee policy that promotes freedom of movement and the socioeconomic rights of the refugees. Specifically, refugees are often allocated land to settle and cultivate rural settlements, and the integrated social service provision facilitates interaction with host communities. However, there remain challenges in creating sustainable livelihoods for refugees in rural settlements. There exist significant tensions over shared resources such as land, water, woodlots, and grazing areas. Based on a survey of 416 households and key informant interviews with South Sudanese refugees in selected settlements in the Adjumani district, the paper highlights refugees’ access to social and economic spaces as critical pathways to sustainable livelihoods and integration. Uganda’s progressive policy expands the opportunity space; however, refugees still encounter significant barriers in accessing the socioeconomic spaces. Sustainability 2021, 13(19), 10831; https://doi.org/10.3390/su131910831

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