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Refugee movements and aid responsiveness


  • Mathias Czaika
  • Amy Mayer

    () (Department of International Economic Policy, University of Freiburg)


This article analyses the impact of refugee migration movements on the long-term and short-term aid allocation decisions of bilateral donors. We distinguish between different types of forced migrants: internally displaced persons (IDPs) that stay in their country of origin, cross-border refugees that flee to neighboring countries, and asylum seekers in Western donor states. For the period 1992 to 2003, empirical evidence on 18 donor and 148 recipient countries suggests that short-term emergency aid is given to all types of refugee situations, but is predominantly directed towards the countries of origin. For the allocation of long-term development aid, donor states focus even more on the sending-countries of forced migrants; in general, they increase aid volumes only for the home countries of refugees, not for the hosting countries. This preference for the countries of origin is even stronger when these are sendingcountries of asylum seekers to the Western aid-giving states.

Suggested Citation

  • Mathias Czaika & Amy Mayer, 2008. "Refugee movements and aid responsiveness," Discussion Paper Series 5, Department of International Economic Policy, University of Freiburg, revised Apr 2008.
  • Handle: RePEc:fre:wpaper:5

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Engel, Stefanie & Ibanez, Ana Maria, 2007. "Displacement Due to Violence in Colombia: A Household-Level Analysis," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 55(2), pages 335-365, January.
    2. Barron, Patrick & Kaiser, Kai & Pradhan, Menno, 2004. "Local conflict in Indonesia : Measuring incidence and identifying patterns," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3384, The World Bank.
    3. Ghatak, Subrata & Levine, Paul & Price, Stephen Wheatley, 1996. " Migration Theories and Evidence: An Assessment," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(2), pages 159-198, June.
    4. Faini, Riccardo, 1996. "Increasing returns, migrations and convergence," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 121-136, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ghosh, Sucharita & Enami, Ali, 2015. "Do refugee-immigrants affect international trade? Evidence from the world's largest refugee case," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 291-307.

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    Bilateral aid allocation; refugee movements;

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