Encouraging and publicising individual initiatives by citizens actually doing something for refugees and migrants is the best way to respond to nationalist populist politicians and demonstrate that not everyone buys their “post-truth” hate and fear rhetoric. See an excerpt from this blog post by Hein de Haas below:
“While migration has become a political ‘hot topic’, public debates about migration have often remained remarkably fact-less. Thanks to the increase in migration research and availability of data, we know much more about the trends, causes and impacts of migration than a few decades ago. However, this knowledge does often not reach the broader public. This is highly unfortunate, since modern migration scholarship has so much to offer in order to facilitate informed debates and better, more effective policies.
Part of the blame lies with politicians, who willingly ignore inconvenient evidence that would unveil their demagoguery and unnerve their migration scaremongering and scapegoating of migrants.
All too often, the news media buy into – and thereby reinforce – the fact-free crisis narrative around migration fed to them by politicians. Many journalists fail in their basic professional duty of fact checking. A case in point is the false political claim that the EU-Turkey ‘deal’ on refugees has stopped refugee migration from Syria.
However, part of the blame also lies with migration researchers, who often fail to communicate their findings in clear, jargon-free language to the broader public, while research papers often remain inaccessible behind prohibitive paywalls of scientific journals. Much knowledge about migration therefore never leaves the academic ivory tower.”