Abdul Rauf, Universität Bielefeld

Social Navigation by Young unaccompanied Refugees

Drawing on the ethnographic observation, this research aims to explore the everyday experiences of young unaccompanied refugees relying on the theoretical framework social navigation. Social navigation is an analytical framework to understand how people ‘act in difficult and uncertain circumstances and in describing how they disentangle themselves from confining structures, plot their escape and move towards better positions’(Vigh, 1997).  Furthermore, considering the intersection of agency and social structure the social navigation  enfolds how ‘agents navigate a terrain that is constantly changing and moving’ (Denov & Bryan, 2012). It means that the individuals navigate through social environment to strive their imagined future. It enfolds that how an agent reconsiders the goals and social trajectories to adjust to the social forces. (Denov & Buccitelli, 2013). Social navigation offers a useful analytical lens for better understanding of ‘movement of social environment and movement of agents within it and its relationship between the two’(Vigh, 1997). Therefore social navigation as praxis includes the complex conformation with socio-political boundaries of exclusion (Tilly, 2018) and moral and institutional forces by peer groups and law (Pfaff-Czarnecka, 2013)