Research consortium

  • Main applicant: Dr L.E. van Waas (Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion, the Netherlands) 
  • Co-applicant: Dr L. Cunial (Norwegian Refugee Council, Norway)

Project information

As four million Syrian refugees face their fifth year in neighbouring countries, the challenges of prolonged displacement are becoming clearer. This includes the risk of statelessness, which is highest for the over 142,000 Syrian children born in exile. Over 90% of Syrian families cannot complete birth registration for children born in Lebanon. Gender discriminatory nationality laws which prevent Syrian women from passing nationality to their children, further aggravate the risk for children without fathers (75% of refugee families). Statelessness is a deep driver of insecurity and injustice, particularly in conflict situations. It exacerbates inequalities, undermines access to humanitarian assistance, repatriation and resettlement, drives insecurity in host countries and can increase vulnerability to smuggling and trafficking. The risks of statelessness and ways to mitigate them are not yet comprehensively understood by humanitarian actors. This project addresses this by conducting research among Syrian refugees, through NRC´s Lebanon, Iraq and Jordan operations and in collaboration with national NGOs, to identify those most at risk. The research will be drawn on to develop a tool to direct programmatic interventions within the humanitarian response. It will also provide guidance for human rights actors to advocate for policy change to reduce risk and assist those affected.

Project results