This research introduces an exploration on the nexus between self-development, minority rights, and the rights of “refugees”. Through the Hakawati (Storytelling) Research Project, Kuubra Kalkandelen’s work focuses on the stories and narratives of people living in Europe and those coming from conflict-affected countries in the Middle East. The interviews conducted as a part of this research study will become a method of understanding on how intangible cultural heritage, far from displaced peoples’ constructed identities, represent memory in terms of the past and now.

The research considers ‘self-determination’ from two distinct points of views that allows individual freedoms and community development, which are possible to achieve with mutual respect and working together for a shared future. This research is an attempt to challenge conventional socio-legal approaches and propose an introduction to resilient thinking through self-identification and self-realisation in forced displacement studies.


  • Assessing the complexity of past and current self-determination claims in terms of secession and self-governance
  • re-thinking the concept based on horrendous atrocities related to current conflict and war crimes
  • Reviewing both individual and group rights through a right to self-development assessment

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