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“Wir Schaffen Das!”? Spatial Pitfalls of Neighborhood-Based Refugee Reception in Germany—A Case Study of Frankfurt-Rödelheim

Department of Human Geography, Goethe-University Frankfurt, Theodor-W.-Adorno-Platz 6, D-60629 Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Soc. Sci. 2019, 8(5), 161; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci8050161
Received: 12 April 2019 / Revised: 15 May 2019 / Accepted: 21 May 2019 / Published: 27 May 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Integration and Resettlement of Refugees and Forced Migrants)
Refugee reception in Germany is a primarily municipal task that relies heavily on neighborhood-based volunteering. This paper asserts that there are fundamental spatial mismatches between municipal policies and neighborhood-based approaches that place additional burden on all of the stakeholders involved. Drawing from the case of Frankfurt-Rödelheim, which is a socially and ethnically mixed neighborhood in Frankfurt am Main, I show how the way the municipality accommodates refugees disregards the politically embraced work of neighborhood-based volunteers and how the ideal of neighborhood-based inclusion creates a spatial fetish that fails the living reality of the refugees. The findings are based on my ethnographic fieldwork as volunteer in a neighborhood-based welcome initiative. View Full-Text
Keywords: forced migration; local refugee reception; refugee accommodation; municipalities; neighborhood activism; Germany; Frankfurt am Main forced migration; local refugee reception; refugee accommodation; municipalities; neighborhood activism; Germany; Frankfurt am Main
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Blank, M. “Wir Schaffen Das!”? Spatial Pitfalls of Neighborhood-Based Refugee Reception in Germany—A Case Study of Frankfurt-Rödelheim. Soc. Sci. 2019, 8, 161.

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