Refugee-Related Research Projects

BADIL-Alternative Information Centre


Centre for Lebanese Studies/Refugee Studies Program
(Oxford University)

Center for Palestine Research and Studies

Center for Policy Analysis on Palestine
(Washington, DC)

Council on Foreign Relations
(New York)


Human Rights Watch/Middle East
(New York)

Institute for Global Conflict and Cooperation
(University of California&emdash;Davis)

Institute for Jerusalem Studies

Institute for Social and Economic Policy in the Middle East
(Harvard University)

Israel/Palestine Centre for Research and Information

Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies
(Tel Aviv University)

Lebanese Center for Policy Studies

McGill University/Inter-University Consortium for Arab Studies

al-Najah University

Near and Middle East Information Project

Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs

Palestinian Diaspora and Refugee Centre/"Shaml"


Royal Institute of International Affairs

Washington Institute for Near East Policy
(Washington, DC)

BADIL-Alternative Information Center

Project for Palestinian Residency & Refugee Rights

Project directors: Ingrid Jaradat Gassner

Contact: BADIL-AIC, PO Box 728 Bethlehem, West Bank; phone/fax: (2) 747346; email:;


This Project has been operating since 1993 (research, information, legal guidance); focus: Palestinian residency rights in Jerusalem; it publishes ARTICLE 74 Bulletin (quarterly) on refugee and residency issues. Among recent reports and memoranda are: memo 1/96: The Trap is Closing on Palestinian Jerusalemites; memo 2/97 on the current situation of Palestinian deportees; memo 3/97 on the role of UNRWA, memo 4/97 on Palestinian residency in the PA areas. The Project also produces audiovisuals on Jerusalem and refugees). In 1997, the Project has relocated its offices from Jerusalem to Bethlehem (BADIL-AIC).

The Project also coordinates the Campaign for the Defense of Palestinian Refugee Rights (since 1996; in cooperation with the Union of Youth Activity Centers/West Bank and the al-Quds Open University/Refugee Studies Center). This campaign is a grassroots campaign aiming at facilitating refugee self-organization based on the program of the 1995 al-Far'ah refugee conference, at linking refugee communities in Palestine, Lebanon, and Jordan, and at local and international awareness raising on the Palestinian refugee question. Recent publications (Arabic only): The Refugees and the Dream of Return to the Land of the Sad Orange (1996); Working Papers Presented to the First Popular Refugee Conference in Deheishe RC/Bethlehem, 13 September 1996 (1997).

Status: Continuing. (updated 11/97)


Centre d'études et de documentation économique juridique et sociale (CEDEJ), Cairo

Palestinian Territories and Diaspora: Analysis of Economic and Social Networks

Contact: Sari Hanafi

Address: P.O. Box 392 Muhammad Farid, Cairo, Egypt

Phone: 202- 392 87 11/16/39, FAX202- 392 87 91


Web Page:

The objective of this research project is to identify the social and economic networks within the different communities of the Palestinians abroad, and which link them to other poles of the diaspora and to Palestine.Using the network analysis, this project raises many questions about the present and the future relationships between the Palestinian diaspora and Palestine and how these relations could serve the nation-building. It will emphasize on the category of the Palestinian business people and their economic activities and their entrepreneurship.

This project comes after a 4-year field research on some 600 Palestinian business people (mainly from Jordan, The United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Syria, Israel, Lebanon, the United State of America, Canada, Chili, the United Kingdom, Australia) which included information on them, on their companies, and their projects.

Status: Continuing (updated 11/99)

Centre for Lebanese Studies and Refugee Studies Program, Oxford University

Palestinians in Lebanon

Project directors: Nadim Shehadi (CLS) and Barbara Harrell-Bond (RSP)

Contact: CLS, 59 Observatory Street, Oxford OX2 6EP, UK; email:

This project, involving scholars from Palestine, Lebanon, Europe and North America, seeks to: i) commission, edit and disseminate about a number of working papers on the Palestinians in Lebanon; ii) obtain and catalogue documentation on the Palestinians in Lebanon; iii) compile a comprehensive bibliography (English, French, Arabic and Hebrew); and iv) participate in broader discussions on the issue.

Status: Completed. An initial planning meeting of the CLS/CRS project was held in Oxford in March 1995 with the financial support of the UK FCO. An extended report of this meeting has been circulated by the organizers. The second phase of the project involving the collection of research and bibliographic materials, and the commissioning of a series of policy papers, was completed with financial support from the EU. These papers (which addressed such topics as history, socio-economic conditions, UNRWA, the Refugee Working Group/multilaterals, and possible final ststus arrangements) were presented at a conference held in Oxford in September 1996. A conference report is available from the organizers; selected conference papers were published in the Journal of Palestine Studies and the Journal of Refugee Studies. (updated 1/00)

Centre for Palestine Research and Studies

Public opinion polling

Project director: Khalil Shikaki

Contact: CPRS, P.O. Box 132, Nablus, West Bank; fax (09) 380384.

The CPRS does regular polling of political attitudes in the West Bank and Gaza; these include both refugee camp sub-samples and periodic general questions on attitudes toward the refugee question. It is also interested in Palestinian attitudes in Jordan.

Status: continuing

Center for Policy Analysis on Palestine

Special Reports

Project director: Muhammad Hallaj

Contact: CPAP, 2435 Virginia Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20037; phone (202) 338-1920; fax (202) 333-7742.

The Centre has sponsored and published a number of items relevant to the refugee issue, notably a symposium on the refugee issue held at Georgetown University in October 1994. These presentations were subsequently published by the Centre, as was a short monograph on refugee compensation by Don Peretz (based on a longer study of the refugee issue by Peretz published by the USIP in 1993).

Status: continuing

Council on Foreign Relations

Palestinian Refugees

Project director:
Contact: Donna Arzt, Syracuse University; phone (315) 443-2401; (fax) 315-443-5394; email

A major monograph on the Palestinian refugee issue by Donna Arzt was published for the Council on Foreign Relations by Brookings Institution Press.

Status: book published in October 1996; sample chapter available in the research papers section of PRRN. (updated 3/97)


Palestinian Refugee Projects

Project researcher: Arne Gronningsaeter; Lena Endresen; Jon Pedersen
Contact: P.O. Box 2947 Toyen 0608 Oslo, Norway phone: + 47 22 67 60 00 fax: +47 22 67 60 22;

Email: Lena.Endresen@FAFO.NO.

Website: (english page)

FAFO supports numerous data base projects relevant to the refugee issue. These include projects on:

1) "Demographic Indicators for the Occupied Territories," (1994-96) funded by the EU and conducted in associated with the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics. This project aims at providing policy planners with core population estimates and indicators on a district level for the WBG.

2) "Palestinian Refugee Study Project,"(1995) funded by the Norwegian MFA. This project examines the factors which influence migration decisions and aspirations, through case studies of camp residents in Gaza, repatriates in the West bank, and refugees working in the Gulf states.

3) "Inventory of Research on Palestinian Refugees,"(1995-96), funded by the Norwegian MFA. This involves a compilation of a bibliography of studies on the refugees written in English, French, Hebrew and Arabic since 1991.

4) "Study of UNRWA Data on Special Hardship Cases,"(1995-96), funded by the Norwegian MFA.

5) "Jordanian Living Conditions Survey,"(1994-96), funded by UNICEF and IDRC and commissioned by the government of Jordan. This project will sample 6,000 households (including refugees) and collect data on a range of social and economic variables.

Status: continuing

Human Rights Watch/Middle East

Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon, Syria and Egypt

Project researcher: Paula Hacopian

Contact: HRW/ME, 485 5th Avenue, New York, NY 10017-6104; phone 212 972-8400; fax 212 972-0905.


Human Rights Watch is conducting a small research project on the legal and social situation of Palestinians in Lebanon, Syria and Egypt, and the prospects for naturalization or resettlement.

Status: unknown

Institute for Global Conflict and Cooperation, University of California--Davis

Promoting Regional Cooperation in the Middle East/Report on Refugees

Project director: n/a

Contact: Howard Adelman, York University

A workshop on refugees was held as part of a larger conference on regional cooperation in Vouliagmeni, Greece in November 1994.

Status: Inactive.

Institute for Jerusalem Studies

Final Status issues/refugees

Project directors: Salim Tamari (Jerusalem,; Elia Zureik (Kingston,; Elie Sanbar (Paris, fax: 331 45 44 82 36)

Contact: IJS, P.O. Box 54769, Jerusalem; fax +972 2 828901


The IJS was established as an affiliate of the Institute for Palestine Studies with modest offices in the Sheikh Jarrah quarters in Jerusalem. IJS has a small working library (not open to the public), a meeting room (for 8 to 10 people), and three computers, two of them with connection to internet. The staff of IJS consist of the director, an administrative assistant and an office manager/researcher. The last position is currently vacant and is likely to expand to two full time positions when the field of research expands.

Status: IJS is registered as a non-profit independent research unit with the Ministry of Interior, and has a license to operate. It also also a pending application for a tax exempt Status.
The main objective of IJS is to assist IPS in commissioning and publishing research on final Status issues: particularly on Jerusalem, settlements, and refugees. With regard to the latter it is supporting two projects: "Research on Palestine Refugees: An Inventory and Critical Review" (researcher: Elia Zureik, in collaboration with FAFO; expected date of publication, spring 1996); and "Palestinian Returnees: Problems of Adjustment and Integration" (researcher: Elia Zureik, in collaboration with FAFO; expected date of publication, spring 1996).

IJS in collaboration with Baraka and other Palestinian Research Institutes has been active in consolidating electronic networking within Palestinian and linkages with the international research communities.

Institute for Social and Economic Policy in the Middle East, Harvard University

Solving the Palestinian Refugee Question: A Project for Joint Research and Analysis

Project directors: George Borjas, Dani Rodrik

Contact: Shula Gilad, ISEPME, Harvard University, 79 John F. Kennedy Street, Cambridge, MA 02138; phone (617) 495-3666; fax (617) 495-4188.

This project seeks to identify the scope of the refugee problem, assess the current situation of Palestinian refugee, explore the availability of international resources, and identify various political and economic options for resolving the refugee issue. It involves research teams from Israel, Palestine and Jordan, together with support from American and Canadian scholars.

Status: An initial planning meeting was held in February 1994, and draft papers were presented at a follow-up meeting in February 1995. Due to funding limitations and other ISEPME activities, the project went into hiatus for much of 1995. However, additional papers were presented at workshops in February and October 1996, and August 1997. ISEPME is currently writing a final consensus report, expected in late 1997/early 1998. For a more detailed overview, see the paper on The Harvard Refugee Project archived elsewhere on PRRN. (updated 9/97)

Israel/Palestine Center for Research and Information

Towards Final Status: Assessing the Refugee Issue

IPCRI Directors: Gershon Baskin and Zakariah al-Qaq; email:

Project Director: Adel Yahya, P.O. Box 841, Ramallah; phone/fax: (972) 2-998-6854; e-mail:; website:
Project Coordinator: Elissa Swift IPCRI; PO Box 51358; Jerusalem, Israel 91513; phone (972) 2-627-4382; fax (972) 2-627-4383; e-mail:; website:

Over an eight month period, IPCRI will be conducting a study of the Palestinian refugee issue, in order to make an extremely current assessment and timely recommendations concerning the issue of Palestinian refugees in the context of final status negotiations.

Surveys and in-depth interviews will be conducted amongst the Palestinian and Israeli communities. Adel Yahya will conduct the research for the Palestinian side, and Dani Rubinstein. The Palestinian study group participants will be Norma Masriyeh, Masalam abu-Hilo, Yousef Nasser, Shawqi Ayasha, and Mazen Qatuto. The Israeli study group participants will be Benny Morris, Nomi Bar Yaacov, Emanuel Marx, and Gadi Zohar. This being a joint project gathering both Palestinian and Israeli scholars, the results of this study will be proposals and recommendations relevant and legitimate to both the Israeli and Palestinian negotiating teams.

Status: The project is officially underway as of April, 1997. The first official meeting of the study group was held at the beginning of May, and subsequent study group meetings will be held each month until January 1998. Surveys will be conducted in July, August and October. (updated 5/97)

Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies, Tel Aviv University

FinalStatus issues / Palestinian Refugees

Project author: Shlomo Gazit

Contact: n/a


Status: A policy paper on the refugee issue was published by the Jaffee Center as part of a larger series of studies on Palestinian-Israeli final Status issues.

Status: The Hebrew version of the paper was published in mid-1994, and English and Arabic versions of the paper were published in 1995. A one-day symposium on the refugee issue may be held by JCSS in 1997-98. (updated 9/97)

Lebanese Centre for Policy Studies

Final status issues

Project researcher:

Contact: LCPS, P.O. Box 55215, Sin al-Fil, Beirut, Lebanon; phone (1) 490-561; fax (1) 490-375.

The LCPS is undertaking work on final Status issues, including the Palestinians in Lebanon. It is also putting together a series of opinion surveys on how Palestinians and Lebanese view each other. Finally, it is monitoring the RWG as part of a broader project to document the multilaterals.

Status: some funding from the Ford Foundation

McGill University
Interuniversity Consortium for Arab and Middle East Studies

Palestinian Refugee ResearchNet

Project director: Rex Brynen

Contact: Rex Brynen, Department of Political Science, McGill University, 855 Sherbrooke Street West, Montréal, Québec, H3A 2T7. Phone: 514 398-5075; fax: 514 695-5474; email


FOFOGNET ("Friends of the Friends of the Gavel") is an internet discussion list initially established to link the Canadian members of a DFAIT/IDRC academic "brainstorming" group on the Refugee Working Group, It has subsequently expanded its distribution to include members of the CLS/RSP (Oxford), ISEPME (Harvard), IPCRI, HRW/ME, FAFO, Shaml, AIC, IJS, PASSIA, RAND and other projects, as well as independent subscribers in the Middle East, Europe and North America.

The Palestinian Refugee ResearchNet (PRRN) is a world wide web site devoted to the Palestinian refugee issue.

On 8-9 December 1997 PRRN, in association with the International Development Research Centre, will host a major international "stocktaking Conference on Palestinian Refugee Research" in Ottawa. For the first time ever, this conference will provide an opportunity for researchers from all over the world to take a critical and comprehensive examination of major current research and dialogue initiatives on this issue to review work, identify gaps and needs in research and identify future activities.

Status: continuing. (updated 9/97)

al-Najah University

Academic Programme for the Study of Involuntary Migration

Project director: Dr. Najeh Jarrar

Contact: Dr. Najeh Jarrar, Academic Programme for the Study of Involuntary Migration, An Najah National University, PO Box 7, Nablus, Palestine. Email:


The Academic Programme for the Study of Involuntary Migration (APSIM) based at An Najah National University, Nablus, West Bank. APSIM is involved in raising the awareness of refugee issues within Palestine as well as internationally. Recently it has organised several national conferences, addressing issues such as Palestinian refugees and the media and the role of Palestinian refugees in political parties.

Status: In the future, APSIM hopes to organise an international conference to further address the issue of refugees. (updated 9/97)

Near and Middle East Information Project
(Informationsprojekt Naher und Mittlerer Osten - INAMO)

Research Group on Palestinian Refugees

Contact: Ronald Ofteringer, Fadia Foda, Randa Abu Mugheisib. INAMO, Dahlmannstr. 31, D-10629 Berlin; fax: (30) 862 38 49 or 6158596; e-mail:

INAMO was founded in 1994 by a group of academics, journalists and human rights activists in order to provide and disseminate background information and analysis on the Near and Middle East as well as German and European politics on the Middle East and questions of migration and asylum. It publishes a quarterly magazine (INAMO). INAMO has established a research group to conduct research and create public awareness on the problem of the Palestinian refugees in the framework of the defense of international refugee rights.
In May 1997, INAMO published a book (Palästinensische Flüchtlinge und der Friedensprozeß - Palästinenser im Lebanon) with contributions by Rosemary Sayigh, Nawaf A. Salam, the Alternative Information Center and others.

Status: continuing (updated 9/97)

Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs

Palestinian Refugees Academic Network

Project coordinator: Mahdi Abdul Hadi

Contact: PASSIA, P.O. Box 19545, East Jerusalem; phone (2) 894-426; fax (2) 282-819



In April 1995, a meeting was held at PASSIA at the urging of UNESCO (and after UNESCO consultation with the PA) to consider the establishment of a Palestinian research network on refugees under the auspices of its UNITWIN program. A broadly representative group of Palestinian researchers and universities/research centres participated in the meeting. Were a suitable proposal to come forth, UNESCO suggested that it would be willing to act as a fund raiser.

Status: the meeting led to the establishment of a Palestinian Refugee Academic Network as a precursor to the development of a suitable proposal for UNESCO, with PASSIA acting as facilitator. However, PRAN has been largely inactive.

Palestinian Diaspora and Refugee Centre/Shaml


Project Director: Dr Mashour Abu Dakka

Workshop Coordinator: Rizq Shqair

Newsletter Editor: Dr Abbas Shiblak

Contact (Ramallah): Shaml, P.O. Box 38152, Jerusalem 97800; phone 02 998-7537; fax 02 998-6598; email

Contact (London/Abbas Shiblak): phone/fax +44 181 248 5336; email

Shaml holds a continuing series of workshops on the refugee issue in Ramallah. These address the demography and Status of the Palestinian diaspora; the impact of the peace process; the refugee issue in international law; and the development of a long-term Palestinian strategy on the refugee issue. The Centre also publishes studies, as well as a periodic newsletter (containing information on both Shaml and the refugee issue.) Back issues of the latter can be found in the research papers section of PRRN.

Status: continuing. (updated 11/97)

RAND Corporation

Prospects for Return Migration to Palestine

Project director: Kevin McCarthy

Contact: RAND; phone (310) 451-6919; (310) 451-6905

Email: Kevin_McCarthy@RAND.ORG.

This project aims to provide information on possible patterns of return migration to the West bank and Gaza. It proposes to examine the numbers and characteristics of the Palestinian diaspora; develop plausible scenarios for the WBG economy so as to predict rates of return; explore the consequences of different return patterns; and identify specific problems that need to be addressed.

Status: no information.

Royal Institute of International Affairs

The Future of the Multilateral Arab-Israeli Talks

Project director: Joel Peters

Contact: Joel Peters, Department of Politics, University of Reading, PO Box 218, Reading, UK RG6 2AA; phone 1734 875123x7126; fax 1734 753833; email J.PETERS@READING.UK.AC.

A continuing project exploring the role of the contribution of the various multilateral working groups, including the RWG, to the Arab-Israel peace process.

Status: A project workshop was be convened in the UK in June 1995, involving a small group of academics and policymakers involved in the multilateral track.

Washington Institute for Near East Policy

Middle East Peace Process Multilateral Working Groups

Project researcher: Alan Makovsky (multilaterals); Shai Franklin (refugees)

Contact: WINEP, 1828 L Street NW, suite 1050, Washington, DC 20036; phone (202) 452-0650; fax (202) 2235364; email


WINEP has prepared a largely descriptive overview of the multilateral working groups of the Middle East peace process. It is also working on a study of the refugee issue.

Status: the multilateral project, supported with funding from Japan, has been completed, but has not yet been published. The status of the refugee project is unknown.

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Rex Brynen * * 30 September 2000