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Long-term effects of hosting refugees on second gen health outcomes – Elise Soazic (Geo4Dev 2018)


Soazic Elise WANG SONNE is a research fellow in the Fragility, Conflict and Violence Group (FCV) of the World Bank in Washington DC. Prior to joining the Bank, Elise was a visiting scholar at the University of California at Berkeley (BITSS-CEGA). She is also a former fellow at NYU-Global TIES for children and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa. She is a final year PhD candidate in the Innovation, Economics and Governance for Development (IEGD) PhD Program of the United Nations University (UNU-MERIT) in Maastricht, the Netherlands). Her research interests lie in the intersection of applied impact evaluation on health, education, agriculture and gender in conflict and post-conflict affected countries in Sub Saharan Africa. She is interested in understanding the long-term consequences of violent conflict and forced displacement on household’s welfare and identifying which development interventions work, how and under what conditions. She is currently working in understanding the long-term consequences of refugees and IDPs inflow in host communities of Tanzania and Burundi. Soazic is a strong advocate of research transparency and reproducibility in Social Sciences and her work as a catalyst across the US, Europe, and Africa has been rewarded by the 2017 UC Berkeley Leamer-Rosenthal Prize in the category of Emerging Researcher.

Soazic Elise WANG SONNE’s talk is titled: Long-term effects of hosting refugees on second generation health outcomes: Evidence from Tanzania. The existing literature investigating the short-term impact of temporary refugee shocks tend to focus on price, labor market and consumption outcomes; overlooking the long-run effect on health outcomes of the second generation of children, born decades after the refugees came. The escalation of violent attacks during the 1993-1994 bloodiest period of civil wars outbreak in Burundi, the DRC and Rwanda led almost 1.3 million people fleeing to find a peaceful shelter in neighboring East African countries, mainly in Tanzania. We use data from the latest 2015/2016 Tanzanian Demographic and Health Survey collected between August 2015 and February 2016 with migration history of mothers and fathers. By tracking the district location of mothers during the1993-1994 period of high influx of refugees, We study how the sudden and massive influx of Burundi and Rwandese refugees fleeing civil war impacts on health outcomes of children living in Northwest Tanzania today. We exploit a geographical variation considering the distance from each household’s GPS clusters to the 13 main camps where refugees settled in 1993-1994. We find that almost 22 years later, children of parents that were living closer to refugee camps have better health anthropometrics (HAZ, WAZ, WHZ) and weight at birth.

The 2nd Annual Symposium on Geospatial Analysis for International Development (Geo4Dev) focused on geospatial research that addresses climate- and conflict-driven migration and humanitarian response. This includes observation and modeling of migration and human settlement patterns (in response to climate or conflict stressors), as well as the design and evaluation of interventions for humanitarian crises, mass migration, and community resilience.

Geo4Dev is a yearly event focused on the use of novel geospatial data and analytic techniques to address issues of poverty, sustainable development, urbanization, climate change, and economic growth in developing countries and beyond. This includes a particular emphasis on the use of emerging geo-tagged big data, including satellite, social media, and CDR datasets.

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