Value Extraction Through Refugee Carcerality: Data, Labour and Financialised Accommodation

Martin, Lauren L and Tazzioli, Martina. 2023. Value Extraction Through Refugee Carcerality: Data, Labour and Financialised Accommodation. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 41(2), pp. 191-209. ISSN 0263-7758 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

In this article, we argue that modes of labour and value extraction have been under-researched and under-theorised in critical geographical research on migration, asylum and refugee humanitarianism. We examine data production, voluntary work programmes and financialised asylum housing as key sites through which value is extracted from asylum-seekers’ unpaid and reproductive activities. We argue that specific forms of migrant carcerality are, firstly, grounded in migrants’ and asylum-seekers’ carceral conditions and exclusion from paid work. Secondly, we argue that subtle forms of coercion and conditionality at work in asylum hosting require asylum-seekers’ invisible and unpaid labour. Thirdly, we show how financialised real estate firms further capitalise on government contracts for asylum housing, rendering accommodation as another site of value extraction. We thereby expand conceptualisations of carceral economies of migration control beyond detention and confinement and elaborate the specific forms of labour and value extraction emerging from migration, asylum and refugee governance.

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The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This research was supported by ESRC Standard Grant ES/S016643/1.


Refugees, humanitarianism, value, labour, data, extraction, carceral geography

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15 January 2023Accepted
22 February 2023Published Online
April 2023Published

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Date Deposited:

30 Mar 2023 16:34

Last Modified:

05 May 2023 14:16

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Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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