International migrants in South Africa have been remarkably vulnerable to socio-economic exclusion, corruption and violence since 1994 while public discourse continues to focus on the supposed negative impacts of migration. In the first half of 2017 alone, hundreds of non-nationals have been attacked, displaced and had their shops looted. While no official information on xenophobic violence is available by the South African Police Service or Statistics South Africa, the African Centre for Migration & Society has been tracking xenophobic threats and violence across the country through its platform, Xenowatch. Drawing from spatial data on 500 incidents of xenophobic violence between 1994 and 2017 as well Census 2011 and other data, this presentation will highlight maps of hotspot locations for xenophobic violence and discuss possible causal factors.
Since mapping is an increasingly popular tool for understanding and acting on crime and violence, the presentation explores how we can critically use spatial and causal analysis to understand xenophobic violence and inform conflict prevention and resolution initiatives as well as local and national policy.
Alexandra Hiropoulos is a post-doctoral research fellow at the African Centre for Migration & Society at the University of the Witwatersrand. With a background in crime intelligence and criminology, her research employs spatial, quantitative and qualitative methods to examine xenophobic violence, structural determinants of violent crime and the policing of migration in South Africa.
Date: Tuesday 20 June 2017
Time: 12.30 – 13.30
Venue: ACMS Seminar Room 2163, South East Wing, Second Floor, Solomon Mahlangu House, University of the Witwatersrand East Campus