Integration of Colombian refugees in Costa Rica : an ethnographic approach to the refugees' legal, economic, and social experiences Thesis

(2006). Integration of Colombian refugees in Costa Rica : an ethnographic approach to the refugees' legal, economic, and social experiences . 10.25148/etd.FI14051191

thesis or dissertation chair

fiu authors

  • Bonilla, Angela P.

abstract

  • This qualitative study, based on interviews to 17 refugee families, attempts to identify the reasons behind the lack of integration of Colombian refugees in Costa Rica. The model of Immigrant Modes of Incorporation and the studies of Alejandro Portes and Julia Sensenbrenner about the sources of social capital on migrant communities provided the theoretical framework used to identify the roots of the integration challenges. The findings suggest that Costa Rican policies towards the reception and integration of Colombian refugees are exclusionary. The host labor market is marked by sentiments of xenophobia towards the sample population while reported cases of persecution in the country also inhibit this population's economic integration. The lack of social capital sources contributes to inhibit this community's development, despite their participation in informal networks. There were signs of collective action. Yet, the refugee community fails to come together, while it also seems alienated from the community of Colombian entrepreneurs in Costa Rica.

publication date

  • March 30, 2006

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)