Refugees and the Dynamics of Peacebuilding

The mass arrival and prolonged presence of refugees in neighboring countries can have a negative impact on peace. Yet the issue of refugees has entered very little into contemporary discussions of peacebuilding.

On May 3-4, 2010, IPI and the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation explored the issues of refugees and peacebuilding in an event that brought together policy experts and practitioners from the humanitarian and peacebuilding communities for a discussion on the regional dynamics of refugee situations and conflict, and the need for integrated peacebuilding strategies to improve these dynamics.

This report summarizes the major themes that emerged from the seminar entitled “Refugees and the Regional Dynamics of Peacebuilding,” and covers the following topics:

(1) refugees as peacebuilders;
(2) the potential benefits that countries can accrue from hosting refugees and the strategies they can pursue to support peacebuilding in countries of origin;
(3) case studies of host-country experiences and return and reintegration processes;
(4) the challenges of linking peacebuilding strategies to refugee situations and potential solutions to these challenges.