Centre of Expertise Urban Vitality

Migration and human displacement: Global dialogue on the contribution of occupational science


Global issues, including the current pandemic and ongoing climate change, shape voluntary and forced international migration flows in inequitable ways. Anti-immigrant discourses in the Global North seek to capitalize on public concerns about border control. Meanwhile, the greatest immigration challenges are borne by countries in the Global South. The majority of refugees who are forcibly displaced by war, political violence, poverty, and environmental disasters seek refuge in neighbouring regions where many states lack the capacity to adequately support them. Given these challenges, it is imperative for occupational scientists to work collaboratively to support equitable occupational possibilities for immigrants, refugees, and internally displaced persons. During this dialogic session we will 1) outline useful theoretical approaches for understanding how migration shapes engagement in occupations; 2) discuss specific ethical considerations and methods for studying migration and its occupational implications; and 3) share promising practices for working with people from migration backgrounds. Each topic will be introduced through a brief presentation from one of the co-authors sharing vignettes from their own research and professional experiences to ignite discussions. Following each of the three presentations, participants will be grouped strategically to build networks among those with similar interests. This may include grouping participants who share a language.<br/>>What are the gaps in occupation-based research on global migration, and how can these be collaboratively addressed?<br/>>How can occupational science contribute to discussions within migration studies?<br/>>What occupational concepts are most useful for studying different migrant populations?

Reference Huot, S., Mondaca, M., Blankvoort, N., Black, M., Smith, Y., Abdo, S., Delaisse, A.-C., Razavi Yekta, A., Damiano, N., Reid, H., Trimboli, C., & Rivas-Quarneti, N. (2022). Migration and human displacement: Global dialogue on the contribution of occupational science. Abstract from World Occupational Science Conference, Vancouver, Canada.
Published by  Urban Vitality 1 January 2022

Publication date

Jan 2022


Suzanne Huot
Margarita Mondaca
Mary Black
Yda Smith
Sara Abdo
Anne-C├ęcile Delaisse
Atieh Razavi Yekta
Natasha Damiano
Holly Reid
Concettina Trimboli
Natalia Rivas-Quarneti


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