Kick Off Meeting at Uppsala University, December 1-2, 2017

All members of the RESPOND research team met at the first consortium meeting held at Uppsala University in Sweden, December 1-2, 2017. The meeting was chaired by Steering Committee member, Prof. Dr. Ayhan Kaya (Bilgi University) in cooperation with the project coordinators, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Önver A. Cetrez (Uppsala University) and Soner Barthoma, M.A. (Uppsala University). The gathering included a presentation of new research on polarization in Turkey by Prof. Dr. Murat Sömer, speeches from members of Uppsala University’s Faculty of Theology, The Centre for Religion in Society and RESPOND’s Advisory Board. The major part of the meeting was dedicated to sessions reviewing the administrative and financial management of the project, ethical guidelines, data management and each of the eight research Work Packages.

The researchers also spent significant time discussing two of the most exciting impact plans for the project: Advice Hubs for refugees in Iraq and Turkey and Migration Governance Networks in each country. Through Advice hubs (Hope: Advice hub for refugees), RESPOND team members together with NGOs will provide legal and practical advice to refugees in transit conditions and help them to enter into the labour market by providing access to local companies willing to hire migrants. The Migration Governance Networks are designed to bring together the key stakeholders working on migration governance to enable them to contribute to and validate RESPOND’s findings as well as to suggest solutions to some of the migration governance issues that RESPOND seeks to address.