Navigating A New Life: Syrian Refugees And Their Smartphones In Vienna

Katja Kaufmann


Networked technologies are a key tool for today’s refugees; not only on the move but also upon arrival in their new surroundings as asylum seekers. The paper presents results from a qualitative interview study with Syrian refugees who recently settled down in Vienna, the capital of Austria. It discusses the ways in which smartphones prove useful to their owners with respect to geographical, cultural, linguistic, and emotional, challenges in the new everyday life. While access to information plays a huge part in this, the findings indicate that the attachment to the device itself and its affordances is of equal importance to the refugees.


Smartphone, mobile media, refugee studies, qualitative interviews

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