Document Type



Rappahannock Community College

Publication Date

Fall 2016


This study explores the “push and pull” factors that influence the migration of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the context of the Syrian crisis. “Internal displacement” occurs when a conflict or natural disaster displaces people from their homes. The distinction between refugees or asylum seekers and IDPs is simple. IDP’s are those who have been displaced but are still in their home country, generally in the same area that the conflict or disaster occurred. Refugees and asylum seekers are displaced individuals who leave their home country, seeking protection elsewhere.

The research for this project was implemented using ArcGIS and R (a statistical software) in the form of models, matrices, and other quantitative based analysis. The data used for this study includes survey data, conflict event data, and temporal data on weather patterns and topography to calculate access to roads and rivers. The findings indicated higher levels of spatial correlation than initially expected between displaced populations and conflict intensity (defined as the number of conflict points within a given area). Additionally, the findings of this project were concurrent with other studies findings that displaced populations generally migrate to areas of high infrastructure (see Csala, 2016 and Alix-Garcia,, 2013) .


Ethan Harrison received the 1st place Fall 2016 Student Research Paper Award from the Rappahannock Community College Library for this paper.



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