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IAS Seminar – The Politics of Credibility in Asylum Procedures: Themes and Directions

November 21 @ 1:15 pm - 2:15 pm

The Politics of Credibility in Asylum Procedures: Themes and Directions

by Olga Demetriou and Elisabeth Kirstoglou.

In this seminar Dr Olga Demetriou and Dr Elisabeth Kirstoglou plan to introduce the project “The Politics of Credibility”. The project starts from the premise that in the context of ‘Fortress Europe’ national and supra-national borders have been proliferating. Current research indicates that asylum systems are largely ineffective and fail to serve the victims of human rights’ violations who seek their protection, resulting in significant legal, moral and socio-economic deficits. Asylum-seeking structures routinely create bureaucracies that operate as complex, political technologies of power, intensely productive of destitute, vulnerable and precarious lives. An important function at the core of asylum systems in the UK and Europe is judging the validity of received claims. The validity of asylum claims rests on assessing the credibility of the applicant and her/his. This is a process that typically involves weighting and triangulating the applicant’s narrative against a body of knowledge termed ‘country of origin information’, collected and collated from sources of differential legitimacy that span from INGO-issued country reports to public media and the internet. It has been suggested that the manner in which such information is read and juxtaposed to the testimony of the applicant largely depends on the adjudicator’s subjective interpretation. This is where the project seeks to make an intervention, by [1] retracing the process of asylum claim assessments in order to map how pathways of credibility are being constructed and to identify key sites in this process where (in)credibility is being produced; [2] investigating how credibility is connected to and affected by (a) existing legal and policy categories, (b) processes of knowledge production that form the basis of the ‘country of origin information’, (c) notions of what constitutes ‘evidence’ and patterns of evidence interpretation. In the seminar, Dr Demetriou and Dr Kirstoglou seek to discuss specific aspects of the key research pillars of the project, namely: credibility in the politics of knowledge; credibility as epistemic injustice; credibility and the politics of interpretation; and credibility in legal and policy categories.


Places are limited so please register here.


November 21
1:15 pm - 2:15 pm
Event Category:


Institute of Advanced Study, Cosin’s Hall, Seminar Room

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