Development approaches to displacement

This discussion paper explores the challenges and opportunities presented by forced displacement and the need for sustainable solutions. It emphasizes the importance of addressing the root causes of displacement, such as conflict, poverty, and climate change, and highlights the role of development in preventing and mitigating displacement. The paper examines different approaches to supporting displaced populations, including humanitarian assistance, development programming, and the integration of displaced persons into host communities. It concludes by emphasizing the need for a comprehensive and multi-sectoral approach to displacement that prioritizes resilience, social cohesion, and long-term development.


Forced displacement is a pressing global issue, with over 60 million people affected worldwide. This paper by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) explores the development approaches to displacement and highlights the need for investing in long-term solutions. The root causes of displacement include poverty and lack of livelihood opportunities, protracted conflicts and violent extremism, natural and man-made disasters, and poor governance. These factors often reinforce each other, creating hotspots of vulnerability.

Displacement poses significant development challenges, as it undermines the fragile gains made in many countries and can lead to increased poverty and insecurity. The concentration and duration of displacement are also increasing, with many refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) living in developing countries. The impacts of displacement can be both positive and negative, affecting individuals, communities, and nations. While displacement can strain resources and infrastructure in host communities, it can also bring economic growth and innovation if managed well.

The paper emphasizes the importance of addressing the root causes of displacement and investing in development approaches. It calls for the integration of displaced populations into national development plans, promoting social cohesion, and providing access to education, healthcare, and livelihood opportunities. It also highlights the need for stronger governance, improved disaster risk reduction measures, and increased international cooperation to address the challenges of displacement. Overall, the paper advocates for a comprehensive and sustainable approach to displacement that focuses on long-term solutions and resilience-building.


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