Archives de catégorie : Migration

Migration and Displacement In and From Darfur

Program Title: Migration and Displacement in and from Darfur: Conflict, livelihoods and food insecurity. A research project to examine migration trends and inform policy”

Partners: SOAS, ODI, Faculty of Economic and Social Studies – University of Khartoum, CEDEJ Khartoum, Oxfam Sudan

Project sponsored by: SOAS/EU Trust Fund REF; the Dutch Embassy in Khartoum


The proposed research aims to examine trends, processes and drivers of migration and displacement in and from Darfur, with a particular focus on migration flows during its protracted conflict.  The research will provide insights into current mobility patterns, explore the reasons for migration and displacement, how it builds on past migration patterns, and the decision-making processes of actual and potential migrants and refugees. The findings will lead to better understanding of the recent changes in migration flows, in particular towards Europe, and of the effect of current interventions targeting migrants.  The study also aims to identify appropriate responses to reduce levels of irregular or unsafe migration or create opportunities to stay safely at home.  This proposal provides the justification for doing the research, the proposed research questions, methods, timeframe and budget.  It also provides background information on the nature and types of migration in Darfur.

In 2015 and 2016, Sudanese formed the fifth and sixth largest categories of migrants coming into Italy respectively, representing between 6.5-7% of migrants, or an estimated 10,600 in 2015 and 8,600 in 2016 by September (UNHCR, 2016a and b). Refugee sites in Europe report a large proportion of Sudanese, for example a survey in the Calais camp in France in July 2016 found that out of 7,037 refugees, 32% were Sudanese (Refugee Rights Data Project, 2016).

However, beyond these aggregate figures little is known about the trends and causes of migration in and from Sudan, and specifically Darfur in terms of changing patterns, destinations, reasons, processes of migration, or who is leaving.  Migration is rarely covered in aid agency assessments.

  • To explore current trends, drivers and constraints in migration in and from Darfur, particularly into Europe.
  • To inform policy and programming responses, in Europe and in Sudan, and to advise on appropriate interventions and the likely effect of current interventions targeting potential and actual migrants and refugees.

Geographical scope and purposive sampling

Within Sudan the geographical focus of the research will be Khartoum and Darfur, most likely North Darfur State and Central and/or West Darfur States, where different patterns of migration have traditionally been an important part of livelihoods, and which are known to be the geographic point of origin for migrant flows to Europe.   In Europe, the geographic focus will be Italy, France and the UK, where Sudanese migrants are known to have congregated, or to pass through.

Within the respective Darfur states selected for the study, a purposive sampling frame of different population groups will be constructed, that takes account of traditional and recent migration patterns, different livelihood and ethnic groups, and different experiences of the conflict in Darfur, according to the following draft criteria:

  • groups with a long history and tradition of migration as part of their livelihood strategy, for example the Zaghawa from north-west Darfur, or the Fur from Jebel Si and Kebkabiya in west-central Darfur.
  • groups from which it is known that some have migrated to Europe, and that have experienced violent conflict and displacement, for example in camps for the displaced such as Abou Shook or Zamzam camps near El Fasher town.
  • groups in selected state capitals within Darfur, for example El Fasher or Geneina, from where it is known that migrants have left[1]
  • if possible, groups in opposition-controlled areas (for example in Central Darfur state) from where it is known that migrants have left, as well as in government-controlled areas
  • if feasible, groups living in areas where EU funded projects have been/are being implemented

Final report to be issued first semester of 2018.


Coordinators: Susanne Jaspars, Research Associate, SOAS, London; Margie Buchanan-Smith, Senior Research Associate, HPG/ODI.


[1] There will be overlap between groups 1-3.  Some of those with a long history of migration will have been displaced, including both the Zaghawa and Fur.  Those with a long history of migration will also present in state capitals.

« Le Soudan, pays de destination? Le cas des Syriens arrivés après 2011 à Khartoum »

CEDEJ Khartoum and Observatoire de l’Afrique de l’Est are our pleasure to share with you the latest report of the Observatoire de l’Afrique de l’Est, written by Alice Koumurian: « Le Soudan, pays de destination? Le cas des Syriens arrivés après 2011 à Khartoum », Note d’actualité n°3.

Arrivée d’un stagiaire

Le CEDEJ Khartoum est heureux  de vous annoncer l’arrivée de Vladimir Cayol. Il sera présent au CEDEJ jusqu’au 31 mars 2018. Il travaillera sur la mise en oeuvre du processus de Khartoum. Il tachera dans le cadre d’une publication à venir de comprendre comment ce programme se met en place à l’échelle locale et comment se coordonnent les différents acteurs chargés de le mettre en oeuvre.

CEDEJ Khartoum’s research activities on migration

In 2015 and 2016, CEDEJ Khartoum particularly invested in migration issues through different scientific events and the support of several researchers/PhD students’ fieldwork in Sudan.


IMG_9604A scientific conference, organized by CEDEJ Khartoum, CFEE in Addis Ababa and the University of Khartoum entitled “Migration and Exile in the Horn of Africa: State of Knowledge and Current Debates” was held in November 2015 in Khartoum: for two days this major event brought together about forty researchers specialized in the field of migrations in the Horn of Africa.


picture-115Dr Catherine Wihtol de Wenden is a renowned specialist on migration.

During her visit in CEDEJ Khartoum, we screened the documentary « Time to look at girls: migrants in Bangladesh and Ethiopia »(directed by Marco Speroni, 31 minutes – 2015), produced and researched by Katarzyna Grabska, Nicoletta Del Franco and Marina De Regt.



  • Dr Katarzyna Grabska’s field research on patterns of return and displacement movements of South-Sudanese en route to Sudan/Ethiopia as a result of the civil conflict in the South.

In January 2016, CEDEJ Khartoum organized the book launch of her book « Gender, Home & Identity: Nuer repatriation to Southern Sudan » (James Currey, 2014) at the University of Khartoum.cover photo


  • Film screening/debate about migration in March 2016: “Days of hope”, by the Danish director Ditte Haarlov Johnsen

“DAYS OF HOPE” (2013, 74 min) – Every year thousands of Africans leave their families behind and risk their lives in hope of a better life. “Days of Hope” brings us close to these people, providing an inside look at the struggles these emigrants face.

Dr Kasia GRABSKA and Dr Azza AZIZ, anthropologists with interest in migration issues, lead an after-screening discussion of the film.


« The border between the Central African Republic and Sudan has always been porous and the Central African’s presence in Darfur is old. However, the migration of Central African in Khartoum seems to be more recent and linked with the troubles since the putsches of François Bozize and Michel Djotodia. This small community has still a low visibility and has not been studied since now. I focus my study on why and how they left the Central African Republic and came into Sudan. I try to find which networks lead them up to Khartoum and help to their integration. I also ask the question of the status of these migrants. This last point reveals a link between the refugees and the students. Actually, the main network for the Central African to integrate them in Khartoum seems to be the International University of Africa. » – Khadidja Medani


  • Miralyne Zeghnoune’s ongoing fieldwork on Sudanese migrants in France and in Sudan.

Miralyne Zeghnoune, a master student, is currently collecting data on Sudanese migrants’ conditions in France (migratory route, reasons for leaving, future projects, connections with the family in Sudan, etc.). After two-month fieldwork in France (Paris, Lyon, Calais), she will study in Khartoum these migrants’ family and entourage (initial project, administrative procedures, contacts with the migrant, etc.).


  • Alice Koumurian’s fieldwork on Syrian migrants (after 2011) in Khartoum.

Undeniably, the phenomenon of the increasing flow of Syrians coming to Sudan, resulting from the closing of the Turkish border coupled with the facility of entrance to Sudan due to the fact that they do not need a visa to enter Sudan and permission of stay is not unduly complicated, also requires the collection and analysis of data.