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OU research informs award-winning documentary about refugees

A documentary into the plight of refugees which was informed by OU research won the Best Documentary Series at the Broadcast Awards in London on 1 February 2017.

Exodus: Our Journey to Europe charts the journeys of refugees across a whole year, as they travel across 26 countries in inflatable dinghies, the back of lorries, open trucks and on foot. The majority of the three-part series is based on footage shot by 70 refugees who were given camera phones and asked to capture their experiences in 2015.

"This documentary series opens our eyes wide, offering rare and moving insights into the human dimensions of this crisis.”
The programme’s producers were supported by three academic consultants from The Open University’s Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Professor Marie Gillespie, Dr Victoria Canning and Dr Umut Erel, who offered knowledge and expertise on different elements of immigration issues.

Professor Gillespie said the current debates in the media and from politicians give a distorted view of the refugee crisis. She says: “Most of the coverage we see puts refugees in the spotlight, challenging their motivations or questioning their right to protection in Europe. Rarely do we hear the voices of refugees which get drowned in the cacophony. This documentary series opens our eyes wide, offering rare and moving insights into the human dimensions of this crisis.”

Read more about OU involvement in Exodus: Our Journey to Europe.

Read more about Professor Gillespie’s research: Mapping Refugee Media Journeys: Smart Phones and Social Media Networks.
 

Dr Victoria Canning

Lecturer in Criminology

Social Policy and Criminology

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

Professional biography.


Professor Marie Gillespie

Professor of Sociology

Sociology

Faculty of Arts and Social Social Sciences

Professional biography.


Dr Umut Erel

Senior Lecturer

Sociology

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

Professional biography