Mission and Vision

The displacement of tens of millions of people who have fled their homes due to war, persecution, climate change, and other disasters, is one of the great global challenges and ethical imperatives of our time. With the new and continued conflict in many parts of the world, persecution, inequality, disease, and climate change, this number is likely to go up significantly in the months and years to come. The Boston University Center on Forced Displacement is terribly aware of the continued suffering of forcibly displaced persons all around the world and supports new ideas, technologies, scholarship, awareness, and solution identification that will improve the human condition of vulnerable persons, in all parts of the world, who are forced to leave their homes.

The center identifies four intersecting, multi-disciplinary areas of focus

  1. Human environments and climates;
  2. Art, expression, identities; 
  3. Healthy lives and meaningful livelihoods; and 
  4. Training and ethical engagement.


CFD serves as a platform for educators, students, researchers, activists, and policymakers to engage in interdisciplinary research, discussion, and education about forced displacement. Through interdisciplinary, international collaboration, we identify, research, and work to resolve challenges of forced displacement, one of the major moral imperatives of our time. By connecting with local communities in Boston and the USA, as well as our partners in Uganda, Colombia, Lebanon, and the Western Balkans, CFD learns directly from and with the communities grappling with the challenges of forced displacement and creates venues for new ways of thinking, research, and program and project design.