Date of Award

Spring 5-2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


International Studies

First Advisor

Lynn Horton

Second Advisor

Victoria Carty

Third Advisor

Ruben Espinoza


Refugees are both an urgent humanitarian issue and the subject of much political debate in the U.S. and Europe. This research paper compares and contrasts the asylum process in US and Sweden. It analyzes the similarities and differences in their refugee policies and how asylumseeker rights are undermined or supported in the detention centers. The research discusses the historical origin of the contemporary asylum/immigration policies, international standards on detention, their implication, and key contemporary policy trends in US and Sweden. The selection of US and Sweden was not random. Both countries are highly influential in different ways in shaping global policies toward refugees. Both have faced a recent upsurge in incoming refugees; however, they have adopted different approaches to the asylum process. It also focuses on detention policies and conditions and their implications for the ability of refugees to fully exercise in practice their rights to asylum.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.