International Studies

Dr. Julia Morris

Dr. Morris giving a lecture.

Biography and Publications



(910) 962-7113


Teaching Lab 2104

Mailing Address:

601 S. College Rd. Box # 5629

University of North Carolina Wilmington

Wilmington, NC 28403

Dr. Julia Morris holds a doctoral degree in Social and Cultural Anthropology from the University of Oxford. She is a political anthropologist and migration studies scholar whose research focuses on forced migration, borders, and the environment. Her work looks at the political economy of migration, including the forms of financial and geopolitical value that revolve around the commodification of human mobility. She has published widely including in Global NetworksThe Extractive Industries and SocietyJournal of Refugee Studies, Forced Migration Review, and with Routledge publication house on immigration and border control and global knowledge networks. Her book is forthcoming with Cornell University Press on the consequential damages of phosphate and refugee processing in the Republic of Nauru in the Pacific. Previously, she was also a Post-doctoral Fellow at The New School's Zolberg Institute on Migration and Mobility, as well as a research student at Oxford’s Centre on Migration, Policy and Society (COMPAS).





  • From Phosphate to Refugees: The Offshore Refugee Boom in the Republic of Nauru. Under contract with Cornell University Press.
  • Degree in a Book: Anthropology. London: Arcturus Press. Publication Fall 2021.


Peer Reviewed Journal Articles

forthcoming/under review    

  • Colonial Afterlives of Infrastructure: From Phosphate to Refugee Processing in the Republic of Nauru. For Mobilities Special Issue: Infrastructures of Injustice: Migration & Border Mobilities.
  • Toxic Geographies of Exposure: Quarantine and Exclusion in Australia’s Landscapes of Asylum. For Mortality Special Issue: Pandemics.
  • Resource Extractive Regimes: The Commodification of Human Mobility. For Anuac Special Issue: Economic Nationalism in a World on Fire.


2021  The Value of Refugees: UNHCR and the Growth of the Global Refugee Industry. Journal of Refugee Studies.


2020  Coping and Confinement on the Border: The Affective Politics of Music Workshops in British Immigration Detention. Ethnomusicology Forum 29 (1): 107-125.


2020   Extractive Landscapes: The Case of the Jordan Refugee Compact. Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees 37 (2): 87-96.


2019    Violence and Extraction of a Human Commodity: From Phosphate to Refugees in the Republic of Nauru. The Extractive Industries and Society.


2019    The Politics of Return from Jordan to Syria. Forced Migration Review Special Issue (62).


2018    Refugee Economies: Violence and Extraction of a Human Commodity. Society & Space: Special Issue ‘Destitution Economies.’


2017    Power, Capital and Immigration Detention Rights: Making Networked Markets in Global Detention Governance at UNHCR. Global Networks 17: 400–422.


2014    Baay Fall Sufi Da'iras: Voicing Identity Through Acoustic Communities. African Arts, 47/1.


Book Chapters


  • Strange Bedfellows?: NGOs and Offshore Detention. In Forced Displacement and NGOs in Asia Pacific. Inanc G. and Lewis T., eds. London: Routledge.
  • Manufacturing Landscapes and Special Economic Zones in Jordan. In The Handbook of Sociology and the Middle East. F. Müge Göçek and G. Evcimen, eds. London: I.B. Tauris.


2019    Making a Market in Refugees in the Republic of Nauru. In Profit, Protest, and the Asylum Industry. Pine A. and McGuirk S., eds. Oakland: PM Press.


2016    In the Market of Morality: International Human Rights Standards and the Immigration Detention Improvement Complex. In Intimate Economies: Critical Perspectives on Immigration Detention. Hiemstra, N. and Conlon, D., eds. London: Routledge.



2018    The limits and tensions of political representation and experienced recognition among Roma in the UK. With Bridget Anderson, Dora-Olivia Vicol and Pier-Luc Dupont. ETHOS – Towards a European Theory of Justice and Fairness.


2013    The Impact of Privatization on Prison and Immigration Detention, research report for Grassroots Leadership.


Book Reviews

2020   Review of Kleinman, J. Adventure Capital: Migration and the Making of an African Hub in Paris, in Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees 36 (2): 75-76.


2018   Review of Poteet, M. and Nourpanah, S., eds. After the Flight: The Dynamics of Refugee Settlement and Integration, in Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees 34 (2).


2015   Review of Moran, D., Gill, N. and Conlon, D., eds. Carceral Spaces: Mobility and Agency in Imprisonment and Migrant Detention, in Population, Space and Place 20 (8): 757-759.


2014    Review of Hall, A. Border Watch: Cultures of Immigration, Detention and Control, in Space and Polity 18 (1):  110-112.


Press and Non-Academic Publications

2020  Review of contribution to Asylum for Sale in Antipode:


2020   UNCW Office of University Relations press on virtual reality course:


2018   ‘Zolberg Fellows in Jordan.’ NSSR News Monthly.


2018    Interview concerning research for The New School’s Graduate Program in International Affairs, Migration Studio podcast Borderlines.


2017    The Uneven Production of Illegality: A Response to The Daily’s ‘The Sheriff Bind.’ Forced Migration Forum.


2017    Outsourcing the Refugee “Crisis.” Social Justice Journal Online.


2016    The Mythologies of the Nauruan Refugee Nation. CounterPunch.


2013    Reflections on Applied Research into Immigration Detention, Guest Post for the University of Oxford’s Law and Criminology Department blog, Border Criminologies.

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