Universiteit Leiden

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Mirjam Twigt


Dr. M.A. Twigt
+31 71 527 2708

Mirjam Twigt is Research Officer ⁠/ Postdoctoral Researcher for the Leiden-Delft-Erasmus centre Governance of Migration and Diversity (LDE GMD)⁠. Her work is geared to supporting interdisciplinary research on the interrelationship between migration AND diversity and the politics and power involved⁠. She is based at the Institute of History at the University of Leiden⁠.

More information about Mirjam Twigt

Fields of interest

Movement and migration especially in the context of forced displacement and (b)ordering practices; humanitarian practices, migratory activism and/or solidarity; (mis)communication and power; digital connectivity and connected relationalities; urban communities; UN governance; ethnography, creative methods and possibilities and practices around decolonising research; Jordan, Iraq, The Netherlands.  


Mirjam's research is focused on people's experiences of forced migration and how legal and digital infrastructures are interacting with their (often restricted) mobility. Her approach is ethnographic as she is interested in how localised experiences allow to further understand broader struggles and often prolonged oppressions.

Mirjam obtained her PhD at the School of Media, Communication and Sociology from University of Leicester, UK (2018)
. It considered the social and subjective roles that digital technologies play in the lives of urban refugees in Jordan. She then moved to Jordans capital Amman to conduct follow-up research on humanitarian communication. Her postdoctoral fellowship at the Institute for Criminology and Sociology of Law (IKRS) at the University of Oslo was focused on refugee legal aid provision in the Kurdish Region of Iraq (KRI).

In 2022 her monograph Mediated Lives: Waiting and Hope among Urban Iraqi Refugees was published by Berghahn Books as part of their Forced Migration series
. Other research outcomes were published in high-quality academic journals or are under review. She has also published in reports and other publications that are accessible for wider audiences. This includes the work she did together with her REF-ARAB colleagues and research partner: together with Oxford’s Refugee Studies Centre they produced a special feature on Mobilization of Refugee Rights in the MENA in the Forced Migration Review (FMR) - the most-read publications among humanitarian practitioners - which is due in June 2023.

Grants and awards

Mirjam was awarded
- a postdoctoral fellowship grant of 6 months by the Council for British Research in the Levant (CBRL)
/ British Academy to conduct follow-up research on humanitarian communication
- a highly competitive postdoctoral fellowship at the REF ARAB project led by Professor Maja Janmyr, funded by the Research Council of Norway and based at the Institute for Criminology and Sociology of Law, University of Oslo

She also received external funding to organise a number of international events and workshops, connecting the work of academics, activists and practitioners

Key publications

Twigt, Mirjam A. Mediated lives. Waiting and hope among urban Iraqi refugees in Jordan, Berghahn Books (2022).

Twigt, Mirjam A
. Managing absent presences in Amman: an exploration of virtual homemaking practices among Iraqi refugees in Jordan. Popular Communication Special Issue Migrant Socialities and Media (2019).

Twigt, Mirjam A
. The Mediation of Hope: Digital Technologies and Affective Affordances within Iraqi Refugee Households in Jordan. Social Media + Society Special Issue Forced Migrants and Digital Connectivity (2018).

Frouws, B
., et al. Getting to Europe the Whatsapp’ way. The use of ICT in contemporary mixed migration flows to Europe. Regional Mixed Migration Secretariat in collaboration with the Danish Refugee Council. Briefing Paper 2, June (2016).


  • Faculty of Humanities
  • Institute for History
  • Economische en Sociale geschiedenis

Work address

Johan Huizinga
Doelensteeg 16
2311 VL Leiden
Room number 108A




  • No relevant ancillary activities
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