Faith-based organisations and the humanitarian governance of refugee resettlement

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This article investigates the role of faith-based organisations (FBOs) in refugee resettlement. Scholarly work on the role of FBOs in refugee resettlement remains limited and mostly focuses on FBOs' involvement in the resettlement policies of major resettling states. In contrast, this article draws on an understanding of refugee resettlement as humanitarian governance. Accordingly, refugee resettlement is an instrument of both care and control encompassing the discourses and practices of numerous governmental, intergovernmental and non-state actors at multiple levels. Approaching refugee resettlement as humanitarian governance means to unpack its power dynamics from the global to the local level. This article shows how FBOs contribute to these power dynamics. Its new perspective on the multifaceted role of FBOs in refugee resettlement aims to advance our understanding of refugee resettlement, to expand scholarship on the role of FBOs in immigration and refugee policy and to contribute to current debates on religion, policy and politics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-171
Number of pages23
JournalJournal for the Academic Study of Religion
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • refugee resettlement
  • faith-based organisations
  • humanitarian governance

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