The seminar led by Dr. Raphaela Schweiger will delve into the profound impacts of digitalization and technological advancements on migration and refugee policies. In a world shaped by rapid technological change, this seminar offers an exploration of the evolving landscape, both globally and in some specific cases in Africa, the Middle East, Europe and North America. Technology has already begun reshaping the experiences of migrants, refugees, and those on the move. From AI-powered virtual psychotherapy in refugee camps to blockchain-based solutions for identity verification, the migration management field is undergoing a profound evolution. The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated these digitalization processes, demanding swift policy adaptation. The seminar will investigate the wide-reaching effects of digital connectivity, from online learning platforms empowering refugees to the creation of new information ecosystems in the migration space. AI, biometrics, and blockchain are driving innovations in critical migration areas, from predicting migration patterns to transforming asylum processes. But this transformation isn’t without its challenges. As technology intersects with geopolitical shifts, we must grapple with questions of privacy, data access, and human rights. Vulnerabilities and discrimination in the migration space demand our attention.
Raphaela Schweiger is a 2023 Yale World Fellow and the Director of the Migration Program at the Robert Bosch Stiftung. Her portfolio includes global governance of migration, climate mobility, the future of protection of refugees and migrants, and the intersection between technological change and migration. She also works on the intersection of migration with other global issues, such as climate change, peace and conflict, inequalities, and inclusive societies, and has published widely on these issues. Raphaela is a board member of the Doris Wuppermann Foundation, a German foundation, focusing on supporting youth-led initiatives fostering democracy and civic participation. She holds a PhD from the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, a Political Science and Law degree from the University of Munich, an International Studies/Peace and Conflict Studies from the Goethe-University Frankfurt am Main, the Technical University Darmstadt and the University Complutense de Madrid.