Month: June 2018

development

“Que Vaut Le Liban?” Or: What is Lebanon Worth?

Since the end of the Lebanese Civil war in 1990 the prominent vision of rebuilding Beirut as a revived pre-war Paris of the Middle East dominated the governance imaginary in Lebanon. Beginning with the government authorized vision of the late prime Minister Rafik Hariri, and not ending with Merkel’s predominantly economic visit to Lebanon this June, which is supposed to have focused on refugee issues, and the surge of international development projects implemented and underway in Lebanon post the refugee crisis reforms, development seems to be the dominant trend.

While novel projects are taking place, the fact remains that development as socio-urban reforms remains over a century old tool in Lebanon initiated by Ottoman and french mandates that treated the city as a territory to intervene on through urban reform. While today voices such as that of the Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil contend that the international community is looking to settle refugees, hence implicitly question the ulterior motives behind such development projects and practices, other concerns regarding development ought to be considered beyond the demographic: Mainly, (1) the place of development as an urban reform tool in today’s cities and (2) whether governments could or not use development reforms as tools through which they derive their legitimacy and the citizen’s consent to their reforms. Read More

Research Projects

ALL HUMANS UNDER ONE SKY: A PARTICIPATORY VIDEO

Since the beginning of the civil war, more than 1 million Syrians have fled to Lebanon, many of these refugees now live in cities and this is placing substantial burdens on already pressured systems of public services in a context of weak governance. One urban area with a large number of refugees is Nab’aa on the fringes of Beirut. With over 60% of its population now Syrian, the pressures are mounting on the built environment services and the ability of the authorities to ensure security.

This film was made by residents in the area, looking at new ways of living together and building a shared community with tolerance in spite of the considerable challenges.

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Research Projects

REFUGEES & MODALITIES OF RECEPTION IN LEBANON AND JORDAN

Wellbeing and Protracted Urban Displacement: Refugees and Hosts in Jordan and Lebanon

te Lintelo, D.J.H., Lakshman, R., Mansour, W., Soye, E., Ficcarelli, T. and Woodward, W.
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The war in Syria, now in its eighth year, has led to the mass exodus of the Syrian people. Lebanon and Jordan have achieved a remarkable feat by hosting millions of refugees, with many having located to urban areas, where the great majority of local populations are already situated.

supported by NWO-WOTRO, through the Security and Rule of Law inFragile and Conflict-Affected Settings research programme, this research project explored the way border regimes, registration and residency, housing and economic participation influence the wellbeing of host and refugee communities in Lebanon and Jordan.

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