Home lands: Displaced youth and the development of positive transnational identities in a supportive local context

Australian Research Council Linkage Project

Dr Raelene Wilding (Chief Investigator, La Trobe University), Professor Sandra Gifford (Swinburne University), Mr John Smithies (Cultural Development Network), Ms Vicky Guglielmo (City of Melbourne) and Ms Mary Danckert (CMY)

Home Lands investigated strategies for promoting positive identity-making among refugee youth by connecting them with the diaspora via communication technologies. Groups of young people from Hazara and Karen refugee backgrounds participated in a series of workshops to produce audiovisual materials for exchange on the Internet and on CD/DVD formats and in public exhibitions in Melbourne.

Interviews with both participants and facilitators throughout the workshop process examined how the provision of opportunities for transnational communications impacts upon identity-formation, settlement and belonging in national and transnational contexts for youth who have experienced displacement. The findings have implications for settlement and community programs for refugee youth in Australia and elsewhere.

This project was funded by the Australian Research Council, 2009-2013 (LP0989149), City of Melbourne and Cultural Development Network ($483,000).

Publications, films, exhibitions and links

Robertson, Z, Wilding, R., and Gifford, S. 2015 (in press) 'Mediating the family imaginary: Young people negotiating absence in transnational refugee families', Global Networks

Gifford, S. & Wilding, R. 2013, 'Digital escapes? ICTs, settlement and belonging among Karen youth in Melbourne, Australia'. Journal of Refugee Studies 26(4): 558-75.

Wilding, R. 2012, 'Mediating culture in transnational spaces: An example of young people from refugee backgrounds', Continuum 26(3): 501-511.

Wilding, R. 2009, 'Refugee Youth, Social Inclusion, and ICTs: can good intentions go bad?', Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society 7(2/3): 159-174.

Cultural Development Network

Home Lands v2

City of Melbourne - Home Lands v2


For further information about this project, please contact:

Dr Raelene Wilding
Department of Social Inquiry
La Trobe University 
T: +61 3 9479 2679
E: r.wilding@latrobe.edu.au