Benjamin Etzold

Senior Researcher, Bonn International Center for Conversion


Benjamin works on patterns and trajectories of migration and displacement, and studies people’s vulnerabilities, livelihoods, labour relations, and mobilities in different regions. He studied Geography, Sociology, Political Science and Development Studies at the Universities of Stuttgart, Adelaide and Bonn. He worked in the Geography Department of the University of Bonn from 2007 till 2016, where he also obtained his PhD in 2012 with his research on the livelihoods of street vendors and political contestations in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Together with his students, he conducted research on the integration, place-making and transnational lives of refugees in Bonn, on refugee’s access to work and on the available social services in a disadvantaged neighbourhood. In 2011-12, he led a case study on rainfall variability, food security and human mobility in Bangladesh in the research project “Where the Rain falls” by the UN University and CARE. Benjamin joined BICC in 2016 and coordinated BICC’s activities in the collaborative project “Flucht: Forschung und Transfer”, which aimed at strengthening and institutionalizing networks in forced migration and refugee studies in Germany. Since 2019, he leads the interdisciplinary, international, and EU-funded research project TRAFIG – Transnational Figurations of Displacement. The project aims to better understand how displaced people make use of translocal networks and mobilities to overcome conditions of protracted displacement.

Policy Briefs

G7 Germany 2022

People First – New Solutions to the Challenge of Displacement

Benjamin Etzold (Bonn International Center for Conversion), Martin Wagner (International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD)), Caitlin Katsiaficas (International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD))

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