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May 18, 2021 | 13 Pages | English | Daniel Garrote Sánchez
Where to Settle? How Syrian Refugees Choose their Place of Residence in Lebanon

Syrian refugees in Lebanon are widely portrayed as a broad, uniform group. However, results from an in-depth quantitative survey in the cities of Halba, Saida, and Zahle highlight the significant differences in the profiles of refugees across the country’s municipalities. These differences appear as refugees choose where to settle in Lebanon, a decision that varies depending on their socioeconomic characteristics and those of the different localities. In general, refugees tend to settle closer to the border but are also attracted to areas that have higher income generating opportunities. Social networks also play a key role in choosing where to be located, leading to clusters of Syrians from different regions of origin in each Lebanese city. The main reason behind choosing a location varies from city to city, ranging from networks in Zahle, proximity to the border in Halba, and job opportunities in Saida. Understanding the different profiles of refugees in each area can help tailor policies and make a better use of the available skills in the local economies.

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