Syrian Refugee Crisis Data Report

Social media data provides new insights into how the world watches a humanitarian disaster unfold in real time. We analyze Twitter data and find which events grab global attention, how perceptions shift, and whose narratives gain traction.

Summary

The Syrian civil war has become one of the greatest humanitarian crises in modern history. Social media provides new insight into how the world watches a humanitarian disaster unfold in real time. While social media doesn’t provide a representative sample, the percentage of social media users has grown across the region. Twitter data allows us to see what events grab global attention, how perceptions of refugees shift over time, and whose narratives about refugees gain traction.

There are many questions about how citizens view this crisis, the crisis’s saliency, perceptions about refugees, and how different actors exploit the issue for their own political or ideological gain. To answer some of these questions, we analyze over 1.6 million tweets about refugees and offer several key insights.