Jelena Jankovic-Rankovic | August 13, 2018
In the summer of 2018, Doctoral Student Affiliate Jelena Jankovic-Rankovic traveled to her native Serbia on a Kellogg Institute Graduate Research Grant to conduct research for her project, "Biocultural Approach to Human Migration - Understanding the Refugees’ Everyday Life in the Asylum Centers in Serbia and Its Relevance to Well-Being." Upon her return she sent the following summary of her work.
In May and June 2018, I had the opportunity to go back to my home country, Serbia, to continue my preliminary fieldwork, over the span of seven weeks. My research investigates routinized social practices (a term that I have coined) and the effects of physical and psychosocial stress on the health of refugees in a transitory state. I study this question in two Asylum Centers, one in Belgrade (the capital) and the other in Bogovadja (70km away from Belgrade). Refugees and migrants are provided with accommodation and other necessary living conditions in a total of 18 different facilities on the territory of Serbia - thirteen reception centers and five asylum centers. All eighteen facilities are under the jurisdiction of the Commissariat for Refugees and Migration, a separate organization within the Serbian public system.
With the full support of the Commissariat for Refugees and Migration, I got the opportunity to work with refugees in two above-mentioned centers to better understand how refugees’ daily practices and interactions relate to new sociocultural environments, what happens inside the forcibly displaced person when s/he encounters new sociocultural models and environments, and how these new sociocultural circumstances shape refugees’ social practices, health outcomes, and physiology.
Read more here.