Conflict and Migration: The Case of Somali Refugees in Northeastern Kenya

Asfaw Kumssa, James Williams, John F. Jones, Eric A. Des Marais

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


The Dadaab refugee camp was established in 1991 to accommodate Somali refugees fleeing the ongoing violence, environmental and social problems caused by civil war, famine, and drought. The camp is located in Garissa County in the Northeastern region of Kenya. Recent data indicate that the current population of Dadaab camp (463, 422) is more than five times the camp’s recommended initial capacity of 90,000 people. This influx of refugees into Northeastern Kenya has stressed local resources within the region and requires careful negotiation between the host community residents and refugees. This study analyses this challenging situation through a human security lens, which seeks to encompass the social, political, economic, cultural, and environmental conditions necessary to support sustainable human well-being. The study also identifies the human security challenges facing the refugees and examines the factors influencing conflict between the host community residents and the refugees. Programmatic suggestions for sustainable solutions that empower both the host community residents and the refugees are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)145-156
Number of pages12
JournalGlobal Social Welfare
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2014


  • Conflict
  • Dadaab refugee camp
  • Human security
  • Northeastern Kenya
  • Somali refugees

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


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