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Approaching Psychosocial Adaptation to a Post-Crisis Environment through Case Studies of Javanese Disaster Survivors and Refugees in Sweden
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Theology, Department of Theology.
2015 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The psychosocial well-being of survivors of armed conflicts, forced displacement, and/or natural disasters is becoming more and more an integral component of holistic humanitarian response. Yet many organisations rely on broad, generalised manuals or guidelines which do not take into account the unique characteristics of societies and target populations. This paper describes the author’s research with disaster survivors in Java, Indonesia, and refugee in Sweden, aiming to characterise the process of recovery, adaptation and integration through beneficiaries’ own words. The author looks at how theory can be applied, such as whether a hierarchy of needs can be universally relevant, how the host Swedish society affects refugees’ experiences, which so-called “states of being” subjects experience, and how religion and cultural differences like individualism and collectivism influence one’s ability to regain psychosocial well-being. The author used both in-depth interviews and quantitative questionnaires to obtain data. Results showed an incredible level of resilience and positivity among all groups, though Indonesians reported family, spirituality and the community as major helping factors, while many refugees in Sweden pointed to their own individual determination and will to succeed. Many Indonesians identified economic livelihood as the biggest remaining gap, while refugees in Sweden spoke of language skills, educational qualifications and employment as keys to success and integration. Many challenges and gaps remain, especially for newly arrived refugees facing an increasingly difficult job market and fewer opportunities. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. , 87 p.
Keyword [en]
Indonesia, Sweden, refugee, refugees, displaced, disaster, survivors, earthquake, volcano, Merapi, Chilean, psychosocial, adaptation, integration
National Category
Social Sciences Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology)
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-256912OAI: diva2:840357
Subject / course
International Humanitarian Action
Educational program
Master Programme in International Humanitarian Action
Available from: 2015-07-18 Created: 2015-06-27 Last updated: 2015-07-18Bibliographically approved

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Department of Theology
Social SciencesPsychology (excluding Applied Psychology)

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