Forced Migration and Resettlement in the Pacific - Development of a Model addressing the Resettlement of Forced Migrants in the Pacific Islands Region from Analysis of the Banaban and Bikinian Cases
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Arts
There are currently several potential threats to the long-term habitability of many atolls and islands in the Pacific Islands region, with environmental change appearing the most serious. Minimal attention has been given to the possibility that migrants forced from uninhabitable islands will require resettlement en masse, and assessing past resettlements is crucial to planning for what the future my hold.
Population resettlement is not a new phenomenon in the Pacific Islands region, yet recently it has been neglected by academics. This study builds on past work by Bedford and assesses the current literature in the fields of population resettlement and forced migration, finding that the situation threatening the Pacific Islands is not adequately addressed by any of the planning or analytical tools available. A model based predominantly on the work of Cernea and Muggah was developed by the author to account for this theoretical shortcoming.
The model is used to assess the past cases of resettlement from Banaba and Bikini Atoll, identifying variables which influence the success of resettlement. Conclusions are drawn from the case studies and recommendations for how to avoid negative outcomes in future resettlements are made. This study advances the current literature, provides an in-depth analysis of pressing yet hitherto avoided issues, and can inform both foreign and domestic policy planning in not just Pacific Island states, but receiver states and other potentially effected islands or atolls regardless of region.
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