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This article analyses the impact of refugee migration movements on the long-term and short-term aid allocation decisions of bilateral donors. We distinguish between different types of forced migrants: internally displaced persons (IDPs) that stay in their country of origin, cross-border refugees that flee to neighboring countries, and asylum seekers in Western donor states. For the period 1992 to 2003, empirical evidence on 18 donor and 148 recipient countries suggests that short-term emergency aid is given to all types of refugee situations, but is predominantly directed towards the countries of origin. For long-term development aid, Western donor states allocate aid funds primarily to the sending-countries of asylum seekers.

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Journal article


Journal of Development Studies

Publication Date



47 (3)


455 - 474

Total pages