Professor Chidi Ogbonnaya: ‘Refugees are Missing out on Vital Digital Aid’

Professor Chidi Ogbonnaya is head of the Department of Leadership and Management at Kent Business School. He was awarded funding for his project on social, cultural and economic barriers to digital access amongst Nigerian refugees. Here, to mark Refugee Week (20th to 26th June), he shares some details of the ongoing research.

“We know that refugees and migrants are vulnerable to poor living conditions due to social stigmas, unemployment, and other cultural challenges.

However, as digital technology advances, many refugees are finding new ways to earn a living and support their families.

Our project brings together an interdisciplinary team of United Kingdom and Nigeria-based researchers to better understand the social, cultural, and economic barriers to digital access among Cameroonian refugees in Nigeria.

These refugees were forced to flee their homes due to the ongoing “Anglophone Crisis” and risk missing out on vital digital aid (e.g., mobile money and electronic vouchers) as part of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) ‘Connectivity for Refugees’ initiative.

Our research will generate new evidence-based policies to help improve digital connectivity in refugee settings.”

Chidiebere Ogbonnaya (Chidi) is a Professor of Human Resource Management at Kent Business School and Head of the Department of Leadership and Management.  Chidi’s research covers a broad range of topics on job quality, employment relations, workplace values, ethical leadership, psychological well-being and employee productivity. He is currently studying the leadership and management experiences of disadvantaged workers in low- and middle-income economies.

Refugee Week is a UK-wide festival celebrating the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees and people seeking sanctuary. Founded in 1998 and held every year around World Refugee Day on the 20 June, Refugee Week is also a growing global movement.

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