Trajectories of Flight and Migration and possible Constructions of a Future of young Refugees in Germany

gefördert durch die Analytische Stiftung für Psychiatrie

Leitung IPU

Prof. Dr. Phil Langer
Dr. Aisha-Nusrat Ahmad


According to estimations, up to ten million children and young people worldwide are fleeing from war and violence due to a persistent lack of perspectives and the complete destruction of their livelihoods. About 70 percent of the children and young people who fled to Europe, more than 100,000 in total, are registered in Germany. Many of these young people have experienced traumatic experiences in their countries of origin and in the course of fleeing; some have never had a life in security and normality. Surprisingly little is known about their psychosocial situation, their own perception and experience and the subsequent needs in Germany.

The purpose of this project is to deepen the understanding of the experiences of flight and their psychosocial implications, the social agency of young refugees and their potential contributions to social and political change. It enables the participants to pass on their experiences in a non-psychopathological manner and to convey their ideas, hopes and aspirations for a future in Germany.

As an overarching research question, we aim to find out: How do war and flight-related experiences and current social conflicts influence and shape the psychosocial reality of young people in Germany and their future prospects? This gives rise to interrelated individual questions such as: What hopes, and desires were associated with the flight to Germany and to what extent have these been fulfilled and changed? How do young people deal with obstacles and disappointments? What does it mean for them to live in Germany now and what future prospects have they developed for themselves? What opportunities do young people, most of whom do not have experienced a stable security situation or political stability, see for getting involved in society and politics?

The qualitative research design included participatory methods developed in projects in Afghanistan and Iraq (projective essays, collaborative storytelling) and biographical interviews. 32 young refugees participated in the project, with 15 of them (aged 13-25 years) sharing their stories in in-depth interviews. With regard to the contexts of origin mentioned, the duration of flight, duration and status of residence in Germany, the sample is heterogeneous and represents a wide range of life worlds.

Originalsprache: Englisch


Khesraw Majidi


Projektbeginn: 01/2019
Projektende: 01/2020