'What may be most valuable about the book is that it shows how internally displaced persons are not passive victims of circumstance, and that policy makers and humanitarian organizations should plan accordingly. Understanding the options that internally displaced persons use should help to shape assistance and protection measures before they are introduced.' Journal of Refugee Studies Internally displaced persons are those who have been forced to flee their homes and who do not cross an internationally recognized border. There are an astounding 28 million people around the world who currently qualify as IDPs. Unlike refugees, they have no organisation to deal with their plight. Very little is known about how people respond to the experience of displacement. In economic terms, the presence of the internally displaced is obvious. What are less obvious are the informal protection mechanisms that enable people to cope with the experience of displacement: the information networks that warn them of impending danger, or of events in their home villages. This is the first book to put together information on the networks that people have evolved for coping in such situations.
Examining those people who have become IDPs as the result of violence and war, it uses case studies from different countries, different settings and different phases of displacement. The authors identify cross-cultural patterns of coping strategies, examine whether these strategies are effective and highlight to what extent they are dependent upon culture or the experience of displacement. Ideal for use as a resource of information on IDPs, it is also a practical handbook that will help international organisations formulate their relief plans to support - rather than inadvertently damage - existing coping mechanisms. Case studies include Afghanistan, Angola, Burundi, Burma, Colombia, Georgia, Sri Lanka, Serbia, Sudan and Uganda.
Marc Vincent is the Co-ordinator of the Global IDP project. Birgitte Refslund Sorensen is an academic from the University of Copenhagen in the Department of Anthropology and is one of the leading specialists on anthropological methodology applied to forced migrants.
Acknowledgements Foreword Introduction and Background 1. Africa Angola: 'Deslocados' in the Province of Huambo Burundi: Developing Strategies for Self-Reliance, A Study of Displacement in Four Provinces Sudan: The Unique Challenges of Displacement in Khartoum Uganda: The Resilience of Tradition, Displaced Acholi in Kitgum 2. Asia Afghanistan: Displaced in a Devastated Country Burma: Displaced Karens, Like Water on Khu Leaf Sri Lanka: Developing New Livelihoods in the Shadow of War, Displaced, Relocated and Resettled Muslims 3. Latin America Colombia: Creating Peace Amid the Violence, The Church, NGOs and the Displaced 4. Europe Georgia: Coping by Organizing, Displaced Georgians from Abkhazia Yugoslavia: Displacement from Kosovo, From Patronage to Self-Help Conclusion Contributors Bibliography Burundi Annexes Index