Global Refugee Atlas
The Global Refugee Atlas visualizes and narrates core experiences of the millions of refugees under the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) mandate using remote sensing data, crowdsourced social media data as well as a host of datasets from UNHCR and other international humanitarian agencies.
Exploiting the availability of these datasets, the Atlas is built on an open geo-narrative platform to illuminate the contexts and conditions underlying refugee journeys and camps.
Factors that influence international
crises and cause forced migrations
Global and local scales
of refugee movements
Extension and growth of refugee
camps through satellite imagery
Participation to international
agreements and UNHCR budget
Perception on refugee issues
of social media users
Data and software sources.
The Atlas is divided in five chapters that explore different aspects of the refugee experience, from the causes that generate international crises to the perception of social media users throghout the world.
The Context and Aid sections provide a visual foundation to understand the global scale of refugee movements as well as the context (e.g., refugee flows, human and environmental conditions of hosting countries, spread of wars and civil conflicts) and geographic conditions that underpin refugee journeys. At the same time, they illustrate the response to the refugee crisis highlighting international participation (e.g., countries that are signatories to the 1951 Refugee Convention and the 1968 Protocol, contributions to UNHCR, etc.).
Refugee experiences are highlighted through the use of geo-narratives using as case studies two stories: refugees escaping the brutality of the Burundian civil war and Somali refugees trying to reach the Mediterranean shores (Journeys section). Refugee camps are shown in some detail through two case studies (Kutupalong and Zaatari), while the growth of major refugee camps is visualized using remote sensing satellite imagery (Camps section). Finally the perception and the attitude toward refugees is explored running text analyses on crowdsourced data from social media users (Perception section).
If you have questions, please contact Bo Zhao at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bo Zhao  PI,
Assistant Professor in GIScience
Jamon Van Den Hoek  Co-PI,
Assistant Professor in Remote Sensing
Jennifer Alix-Garcia  Co-PI,
Professor in Applied Economics
Lead Cartographer, Designer
Gareth Baldrica Franklin
This work has been made possible by a grant from the National Geographic Society's Committee for Research and Exploration.
Special thanks to Julia Jones and Erik Steiner for their valuable inputs.