Causes and Consequences of Conflict-Induced Displacement

  • Citation: Sarah Kenyon Lischer (2007) Causes and Consequences of Conflict-Induced Displacement, Civil Wars, 9:2, 142-155
    • Topics:
    • Transnational Issues
    • Keywords:
    • displacement
    • humanitarian crisis
    • conflicts
    • violence

Violent conflict causes millions of people to flee their homes every year. The resulting displacement crises not only create logistical and humanitarian nightmares, these crises threaten international security and risk the lives of displaced people, aid workers, and peacekeepers. Despite the dangers posed by conflict-induced displacement, scholars, policy makers and international organizations usually have only a partial understanding of these crises. Conflict-induced displacement consists of two main factors: 1) The violence that caused the displacement and 2) The characteristics of the resulting displacement crisis. Many observers fail to disaggregate each factor; rather lumping all types of violence together or viewing displaced people as an undifferentiated mass. This paper demonstrates that disaggregation of both concepts-causes of conflict-induced displacement and characteristics of a crisis—is necessary to understand fully the importance of displacement in international politics. The paper develops typologies to analyze those concepts and discusses the implications for future research on conflict-induced displacement.

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