Journal article

Refugee resettlement, social media and the social organization of difference

Refugees Social media Digital communications Refugee settlement New Zealand
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DOI: 10.1111/glob.12233 285.98 KB


Social media platforms allow refugees separated by distance to share information, provide support and exchange resources across borders. This connection has the potential to transform resettlement experiences as people maintain significant and ongoing relationships with transnational networks. Yet, since refugee resettlement programmes generally only scale up to the national imagination, integration remains a normative framework in most policy spheres. This article presents a 12‐month digital ethnography of 15 refugees settled in New Zealand with a view to examining their transnational practices of social media and its influence on integration and belonging. Drawing on a conceptual framework based on the social organization of difference, it contains a discussion on how online global networks increasingly inform the domains of encounters, representations and configurations. The role of social media for refugee resettlement futures and its implications for integration at times of rapid political, technological and social change concludes the article.

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