Navigating social systems : information behaviour in refugee integration

  • Olubukola Olajumoke Oduntan

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis

Abstract

This thesis reports on an information behaviour investigation into refugee integration, undertaken to understand how refugees navigate complex integration processes and systems. The aim was to find person-centred information needs, relationships and sources that could inform the design of person-centred integration systems. The study was carried out through an interdisciplinary synthesis of academic literatures and professional practice. Theories of information behaviour were synthesised with principles in refugee integration into a theoretical framework founded on Dervin's sense-making methodology.The research data were collected by interviews and observations, such that the observation data substantiated interview findings. A diverse population of refugees were interviewed directly and observation of service provision was recorded during a volunteer role with the Scottish Refugee Council. The data analysis was process-driven and dynamic, using an iterative process of thematic coding. This resulted in pertinent institutional dimensions being factored into the identification of information needs.The research findings culminated in an information needs matrix - a navigational guide with implications for research, policy and practice. The study found connections between people, information and sociological needs as refugees navigate integration processes and systems. In addition, the experiences of navigating integration systems were tied to specific times, places and human conditions. This relationship resulted in the information needs matrix, which encompasses the complexities of navigating integration systems and points to refugee integration being as much an information issue as it is a sociological one.
Date of Award1 Feb 2018
LanguageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University Of Strathclyde
SponsorsUniversity of Strathclyde
SupervisorIan Ruthven (Supervisor) & (Supervisor)

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