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Refugee Entrepreneurial Economies in Urban South Africa

The primary aim of this report is to examine what we call “refugee entrepreneurial economies” in urban South Africa. Within the informal sector, refugee enclaves have often been viewed as stagnant pools of desperation, providing narrow opportuniti...

Comparing Refugees and South Africans in the Urban Informal Sector

This report compares the business operations of over 2,000 South Africans and refugees in the urban informal economy and systematically dispels some of the myths that have grown up around their activities. First, the report takes issue with the pe...

Rendering South Africa Undesirable: A Critique of Refugee and Informal Sector Policy

To understand the policy environment within which refugees establish and operate their enterprises in South Africa’s informal sector, this report brings together two streams of policy analysis. The first concerns the changing refugee policies and ...

Criminal Tendencies: Immigrants and Illegality in South Africa

The purpose of this brief has been to draw attention to the complex new forms of migration and immigration that are transforming traditional migration dynamics to South Africa. Our intention, in doing so, is to contest the view that there is any n...

NEPAD, the City and the Migrant: Implications for Urban Governance

This policy briefly questions the ability of formal developmental interventions to understand local contexts, and, by extension, govern urban spaces. It interrogates the relevance and implications of initiatives like the New Partnership for Africa...

South African Government and Civil Society Responses to Zimbabwean Migration

"This policy brief discusses a key paradox in relation to Zimbabwean migration into South Africa. While Zimbabwean migration since 2000 has been the largest concentrated flow in South African history, South Africa’s reaction to this movement has b...

Migration, Urbanisation and Sustainable Livelihoods in South Africa

"Crises present both opportunities and dangers. When facing turmoil in the 1980s, South Africa embraced an aggressive agenda of social, economic, and political transformation. The results are imperfect, but few question the underlying wisdom of th...

Soft Targets: Xenophobia, Public Violence and Changing Attitudes to Migrants in South Africa after May 2008

"The post-apartheid history of antipathy towards migrants and refugees is pronounced and well documented. A study by SAMP in 2006 of citizens’ attitudes to migrants reached the gloomy conclusion that South Africa continued to be a society in which...

Complex Movements, Confused Responses: Labour Migration in South Africa

"The first section of this paper briefly reviews the post-apartheid decline in permanent immigration and legal temporary labour migration to South Africa. The next section examines some of the new migration trends that have become increasingly imp...

Heading North: The Zimbabwean Diaspora in Canada

"Studies of the Zimbabwean diaspora tend to focus on migrants in South Africa and the United Kingdom. This is the first major study of Zimbabwean migration to Canada. The report presents and discusses the findings of a SAMP survey conducted acros...

Xenophobic Violence in South Africa: Denialism, Minimalism, Realism

"Violent xenophobia has become a regular feature of South African life. Everyday animosity frequently spills over into violence against individual migrants and refugees and their economic enterprises. Some of these incidents reach the scrutiny of ...

International Migrants and Refugees in Cape Town’s Informal Economy

This report began with the recent military-style assault on informal traders, both migrant and South African, at the Cape Town railway station. While this whole operation seemed like massive overkill and certainly mystified the traders themselves ...

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