9 December 2020

"Boundary work" - refugees, volunteers, and the state-civil society nexus in the new repatriation regime


Modern life is lived in increasingly complex societies. Through the HUMpraxis programme, VELUX FONDEN supports projects where researchers and professionals together provide new perspectives and solutions to some of the challenges facing society. Common to the projects is the human factor and focus on issues that are moving in the social, ageing and environmental fields, which are essential funding areas for the foundation. 

Marie Sandberg


Associate Professor Marie Sandberg from AMIS is head of research on the project ‘Nye grænseflader mellem stat og civilsamfund: Frivillighed og flygtninge i en selvforsørgelses- og hjemsendelseskontekst’ (New interfaces between state and civil society: Volunteerism and refugees in a self-support and repatriation context), which has been granted the amount of 6,212,824 DKK through the HUMpraxis programme.

The purpose of the project is to reduce the social vulnerability of refugees through creating new knowledge and enhancing the agency of refugees in a strengthened collaboration between refugees, civil society actors and social workers.

Through ethnographic fieldwork methods the project team will investigate the new hyper-precarious everyday conditions for refugees in the (newer) regime of repatriation and self-sufficiency in Denmark. Hence, the project will 1) create new knowledge on changing forms of boundary work among public authorities, civil society and refugees, 2) develop new social innovation tools for enhancing refugees’ rights-based knowledge and agency, and 3) strengthen the research-practice collaboration in order to boost the relevance of research-based social innovation in and for practice.

The project is initiated in a unique cooperation between Danish Red Cross, DRC Danish Refugee Council, Centre for Advanced Migration Studies (AMIS) at University of Copenhagen and University College Absalon.

Read more about the project (in Danish)