Supported by the EU Trust Fund, the Research and Evidence Facility (REF) on migration in the Horn Of Africa has been created to collate and produce evidence and policy relevant knowledge.

We are conducting research on the drivers of migration, dynamics of cross-border economies and centre/periphery relations, the features and limitations of government migration management systems and social service provision, drivers of radicalism and violent extremism, and opportunities for strengthening resilience. The research is conducted by a consortium made up of SOAS as the lead partner, the University of Manchester and Sahan Research, based in Nairobi, Kenya.

The Horn of Africa (HoA) is a region with a long history of crises, including conflict, natural disasters, and mass displacement of people both within and across its borders. It is also one of the most diverse in term of cultures, ethnicities, and religions of the African continent. The region’s complexities, combined with a rapidly expanding and increasingly youthful population, are producing progressively more acute challenges to international peace and security.

Latest news, research and commentary

Forced to Take the Road Less Travelled: Lessons From Research on Refugees’ Economic Opportunities in Kenya

When people are reflecting on watershed moments in their lives that ultimately made them who they are today, you often find the poem by Robert Frost: Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by,And that has made all the difference. The choice to take the road less traveled is often exalted but for many young people coming from displacement-affected settings, taking the road less

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Research brief – Mapping the refugee journey towards employment and entrepreneurship

This research brief presents a summary of a research study exploring the current pathways to employment and entrepreneurship for refugees in Kenya, and the actual and potential role of the private sector in creating economic opportunities in Kenya’s refugee hosting areas.

Informality and procedural innovation at borderlands: Lessons from Mandera

REF’s latest paper investigates the impact of formal border crossings on the lives and livelihoods of borderland communities.

Extreme risk makes the journey feasible

What is the role of risk in determining how people move? New research shows how the extreme danger of kidnapping and extortion by traffickers opens up a narrow window of opportunity for some young Somalis to find a way to reach Europe.

The relationship between economic/employment opportunities and migration

This webinar explored efforts by governmental and non-governmental organizations to expand economic and employment opportunities in the Horn of Africa and the influence of these initiatives on mobility dynamics, especially among young people.

REF impact survey results

The results of our survey to better understand how REF products and activities are being received and used by the network.

Watch: our approach to migration research

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This project is funded by European Union Emergency Trust Fund for Africa. 

The contents of this website are the sole responsibility of Research & Evidence Facility and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.