Global Leadership and Cooperation for Refugees

About the series

There are 65 million refugees and displaced persons in the world, with numbers increasing each year. The crisis has brought out the worst in many countries, with several states restricting or blocking entry to those most in need of protection and other countries shouldering a disproportionate share of responsibility. The current refugee system is unpredictable, piecemeal and unsustainable. Unaddressed, it will impact the world for generations to come. Yet, with greater international cooperation, this challenge would be manageable — the world’s refugees account for less than 0.3 percent of the global population. As a result, the UN Secretary-General has called for the creation of a Global Compact on predictable and equitable responsibility sharing to respond to large-scale refugee movements.

To address this challenge, the Global Security & Politics Program at CIGI has launched the Global Leadership and Cooperation for Refugees project to develop and advance ideas for a new system of international cooperation that is capable of anticipating mass movements of people and managing them in a way that is politically viable, fair for all states and properly funded, as well as to consider ways in which Canada can provide international leadership on this crucial issue.

In the Series

Resettlement is a critical component of international responsibility sharing but its practice is limited in relation to overall needs. With more and more refugees worldwide finding themselves in protracted situations of displacement, the search for durable solutions and the need for creative and comprehensive solutions is urgent. This paper outlines the role of resettlement and makes recommendations for using it to respond more effectively and expeditiously to the global refugee crisis.
What is the refugee “burden” and how is it measured? What are the mechanisms through which it can be shared? How can international cooperation be made more predictable? This paper begins by outlining the principle and significance of burden and responsibility sharing before addressing these three questions in turn and making nine recommendations for future policy discussions on enhancing the scope, scale and predictability of international cooperation and burden sharing for refugees.
More than half of the 65 million refugees and displaced persons in the world are children. Most are not in school, as rising numbers strain local education systems to their limits. The world needs teachers trained specifically to provide instruction in complex humanitarian situations. This paper proposes that Canada, with its reputation for excellent teacher training programs, is well placed to help fill this gap by creating a Bachelor of Humanitarian Education degree program that trains international “humanitarian teachers” to work specifically with refugee and displaced students.