Christopher McDowell

Reader in International Politics, City University London

Dr McDowell (PhD University of Zurich; MPhil University of Cape Town) is a Reader in the Department of International Politics at City University London and an independent development consultant specialising in population displacement and resettlement. His research focuses on forced migration in the context of conflict, development and state-mandated population relocation. Christopher has conducted extended research in East and Southern Africa, South and Central Asia and in Europe. His main publications include A Tamil Asylum Diaspora, Risks and Reconstruction, and Displaced the Human Costs of Development, with recent articles on climate change and relocation, and the legacy of collectivisation in Kyrgyzstan. Dr McDowell is currently working with the Inspection Panel of The World Bank in Uganda or involuntary resettlement, and UNHCR on Syrian Refugee Resettlement.

Personal webpage

Recent publications

2014) ‘Development-Created Displacement’, in The Oxford Handbook of Refugee and Forced Migration Studies, Oxford: OUP
(2013) ‘Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation: Implications for land acquisition and population relocation’, in Development Policy Review, Vol.31, Issue 6, November 2013
(2013) ‘Sri Lankan Tamil Settlement and Politics in Switzerland’, in Encyclopaedia of the Sri Lankan Diaspora, Didier Editions (with Ganesh, K.)
(2013) ‘Researching Displacement(s)’ in Block, K., Riggs, E. and Haslam, N. (eds) Researching Refugees and Asylum Seekers: Ethical Considerations, Australian Academic Press, Melbourne
(2012) Displacement: The Human Cost of Development and Resettlement, New York, Palgrave Macmillan (with Bennett, O.)
(2012) ‘Death to ‘Sarts’: A Complex Central Asian Insult’, in Anthropology Today, Vol. 28, No. 6, December


More from Christopher…

From the Diasporisation to the Transnationalisation of Exile Politics – The Case of Sri Lanka, 1983-2016

Three CREST-funded Thematic Reports have been published which examine political action among diaspora populations. Migrant communities are increasingly recognised as critical actors in their...Read More »

Displacement and Transition Risks

Refugees often don’t have choices in the series of difficult transitions they make. Physical transitions across borders are fraught with danger, but also require...Read More »

Understanding Transnational Diaspora Politics: A Conceptual Discussion

This is the first of three CREST-funded Thematic Reports published by a team of researchers at City, University of London, and Cranfield University at...Read More »

The Engagement of Refugees in Transnational Politics: Lessons from the Migration, Diaspora and Refugee Studies Literature

18-035-01 Thematic Report Two (Small)This is the second of three CREST-funded Thematic Reports published by a team of researchers at City, University of London, and Cranfield University at...Read More »

Asylum, Security and Extremism

18-036-01 Thematic Report Three (Small)This is the last of three Thematic Reports published as part of a CREST-funded project carried out by a team of researchers at City,...Read More »

Sri Lanka, Diaspora Politics and The End of Violence

Christopher McDowell focuses on post-conflict Sri Lanka, and how Tamil diasporas helped prevent a return to violence in Sri Lanka. The defeat of the...Read More »

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