Child, Youth, and Family Studies, Department of



Julie A. Tippens

Date of this Version



Published in Journal of Immigrant & Refugee Studies (2019)

doi 10.1080/15562948.2019.1569744


Copyright © 2019 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. Used by permission.


Community resilience has been used as a conceptual framework to promote urban refugee protection, integration, and well-being. In the context of this focus on “refugee communities,” it is critical to gain a deeper understanding of the ways urban refugee “communities” function. This study explored urban Congolese refugees’ use of social capital to promote resilience during a period of political violence in Nairobi, Kenya. Findings illustrate how refugees used social capital across different contexts to access and distribute resilience-promoting resources. Women primarily relied on informal bonding forms of capital while men exhibited greater degrees of access to formal bridging and linking networks. I argue for a conceptual shift from “community resilience” to “resilience within networked communities” in order to develop a more nuanced understanding pertaining to how urban-displaced refugees interact with various social networks to survive and thrive.