Background and activities

Research areas: Citizenship and sustainable development, slum upgrading, participatory urban planning, forced migration, humanitarianism, policy mobility, action research. 

Current teaching: Discourses of Development and Globalisation, Migration and Development.  Programme Leader for the international interdisciplinary MSc Globalisation and Sustainable Development at NTNU. 

Have previously worked on:

  • Urban displacement (Refugee Law Project Uganda)
  • Slum upgrading, gender, youth, and community participation (Cities Alliance)
  • Emergency response rosters (Norwegian Refugee Council)


Current research projects:

AIDACCOUNT: Holding Aid Accountable - Plural Humanitarianism in protracted crisis (2020-2024) Funding from the NORGLOBAL Programme of the Research Council of Norway. Project lead PRIO. Project partners: NTNU, Oxford Brookes University, Makerere University, Centre for Migration Research and Development and Rako Research and Communication Centre.

Co-producing smart sustainable cities - the role of knowledge production in fast policymaking (project lead together with Hilde N. Rørtveit). 

Norwegian Dissemination and Communication Network on International Refugee Protection and the UN Global Compact on Refugees (participant, led by Hakan Gurcan Sicakkan UiB)

DATSAM: Innovasjonsprosjekt i offentlig sektor: Datadrevet samskaping - metoder og verktøy for bærekraftig innovasjon og samfunnsutvikling (participant, led by Bærum Kommune).


Selected Practice and Policy related writing

Refstie, H. 2019. NTNU Sustainability - Roar or Chatter? Universitetsavisa. 

Refstie, H. 2015. Is this Participatory Budgeting? The Blantyre Process, NTNU, CCODE, and TRI 

Refstie H., Hunga, W. 2015. Some lessons to be learned – Informal Settlement Upgrading Project in Chinsapo and Mtandire, NTNU, CCODE, and TRI 

Refstie, H (2014): Negotiating services through community committees – Ndirande Makata, Blantyre, CCODE and TRI 

Refstie, H and Da Silva F. (2012): Youth: The face of Urbanization, Inclusive Cities, CIVICS Cities Alliance, Washington DC

Crisp, J. and Refstie, H. The urbanisation of displaced peopleCIVICS Cities Alliance, Washington DC

Cities Alliance (2009): 2009 Annual report Building Cities and Citizens – Highlighting Gender Issues in Slum Upgrading, Cities Alliance. 

Refstie H., Dolan, C., Okello M. (2009): Urban IDPs in Uganda, Victims of Institutional Convenience? Forced Migration Review 34

Refugee Law project (2007): What About Us? – The Exclusion of Urban IDPs from Uganda’s IDP related Policies and InterventionRefugee Law Project, Kampala 


Scientific, academic and artistic work

Displaying a selection of activities. See all publications in the database

Journal publications

Part of book/report

  • Hitland, Sigrun Haugdal; Nielsen, Brita Fladvad; Refstie, Hilde. (2019) Den kritiske student, Norge anno 2019. Universitetskamp.
  • Jakobsen, Thomas Sætre; Andresen, Silje Aurora; Smeplass, Eli; Henriksen, Ida Marie; Refstie, Hilde. (2019) New University Norway og ProtestPub. Universitetskamp.
  • Refstie, Hilde. (2019) Ulikhet og uformalitet i bysamfunn - erfaringer fra det globale sør. Bysamfunn.
  • Sliwa, Marcin; Aranya, Rolee; Refstie, Hilde. (2018) Urban Ecological Planning: Principles, value positions and application in practice. Proceedings of 54th ISOCARP Congress Bodø, Norway, October 1-5, 2018. Cool planning: changing climate & our urban future.


  • Refstie, Hilde; Rørtveit, Hilde Nymoen. (2019) The role of research in a globalised world of fast urban policymaking. NGM conference 2019 . NTNU Geography; Trondheim. 2019-06-17 - 2019-06-17.
  • Refstie, Hilde; Rørtveit, Hilde Nymoen; Aranya, Rolee; Millstein, Marianne. (2019) Session: Planning for sustainable urban futures: transgressing the North-South boundaries in theory and practice. Nordic Geographers Meeting 2019 . NTNU Geography; Trondheim. 2019-06-17 - 2019-06-17.