Migration, Human Trafficking and Displacement in the Horn of Africa

Fassil  Demissie's picture
Call for Papers
January 15, 2021 to May 30, 2021
United States
Subject Fields: 
African History / Studies, Anthropology, Area Studies, Environmental History / Studies, Immigration & Migration History / Studies


Migration, Human Trafficking and Displacement in the Horn of Africa.

The Editors of African and Black Diaspora: An International Journal (Routledge) announce Call for Papers on Migration, Human Trafficking and Displacement in the Horn of Africa.

The Horn of Africa (Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia and Djibouti) is characterized by the convergence of social and economic crisis particular to the region’s deeply problematic and contested history. Bracketed by the Ethiopian famine since the mid-1980s, prolonged and deadly secessionist wars, cold war interventions, debilitating poverty, environmental crisis, state violence, political repression, massive military interventions, internal displacement, human trafficking and migration have produced far-reaching and consequential dynamics that go far beyond the immediate confines of the region. The dynamic produced by the massive crisscrossing and overlapping political and social fault lines within the core and peripheral areas of the Horn of Africa have resulted in unprecedented social and economic crisis, migration, forced displacement and human trafficking on a scale and complexity unknown before.

Preliminary research indicates that more people now move from the Horn of Africa to eastern and southern Africa than those crossing the Sahara to reach European shores.  More and more people from the Horn of Africa are also now moving to the Gulf states and beyond, fleeing poverty, environmental crisis, ethnic and political violence as well as state repression in search of better economic opportunities. An elaborate and illicit infrastructure often hidden and invisible has been established across the region by criminal gangs, corrupt elements of state security apparatus and bureaucrats to move people and goods across borders for personal financial gain.

The dynamics of migration, human trafficking and displacement within the region have not been insufficiently studied.  Forced or voluntary migration from and into the Horn of Africa uproots vast numbers of people from their homes, communities as well as their livelihoods and places them in new, unknown locations, often in dangerous camps without sufficient resources where they become victims of hostile and indifferent bureaucrats as well as state agencies.   Increasingly the region (Ethiopia) is also hosting a large number of displaced people from Eritrea, Somalia as well as from South Sudan. These large-scale population movements within and out of the region have made the area unique both as a sending and receiving hub of migrants and displaced people with fragile states and weak infrastructure and institutional capacity.  

The Call  for Papers seeks to shed light on the diverse dimensions and experiences of migration within the Horn of Africa and beyond in order to foster wide-ranging debates and dialogues on  migration and the ways in which local actors such as states,  humanitarian agencies (NGO’s), human traffickers and criminal organizations play an active role in migration, human trafficking and displacement of people in the Horn of Africa.

The Guest Editors invite scholars, practitioners and policymakers to submit theoretically informed and empirically grounded submissions that seeks to address the multilayered dynamics that undergird the following issues in the Horn of Africa.

  • Mixed migration dynamics and mobility policies
  • Human trafficking, criminal gangs and illicit infrastructure networks
  • Covid-19 and mobility restrictions
  • Environmental change and variability
  • Sex trafficking, bondage and slavery  
  • Femininization of migration
  • Migrants and precarious livelihoods in the urban formal sector
  • Human displacement and ethnic politics
  • State violence, repression and forced migration
  • Fragile states and internal displacement
  • Refugee protection and migration management systems
  • Human rights and refugee detention centers
  • Politics of humanitarian intervention

Abstracts should be 400‐500 words in length. Authors should send their material with the abstract attached as a Word document.  On a cover sheet, please be sure to include the following:  full name, institutional affiliation, contact information and the title of your abstract. Abstracts must be concise and clearly written.   

Perspective contributors are invited to submit proposals by January 15, 2021. Authors will be notified regarding acceptance of abstracts by February 15, 2021. Authors of accepted abstracts will be expected to submit articles (no more than 8,000 words) by a strict deadline of May 30, 2021.   Proposed abstracts should be sent to editors.

Dr. Fassil Demissie

African and Black Diaspora: An International Journal


Dr. Sandra Jackson

African and Black Diaspora: An Intranational Journal



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