Source description last updated: 5 October 2018

In brief: The Asylum Research Centre (ARC) (formerly Asylum Research Consultancy) is a UK partnership that provides country of origin information research services to support asylum claims and undertakes advocacy and training with the aim of improving the quality of refugee status determination.

Coverage on
Reports, query responses, commentaries on UK Home Office COI and policy documents
Covered monthly on, for countries of priorities A-E (all available countries)

The ARC was set up “to raise standards in the refugee status determination (RSD) process, improve the realisation of asylum seekers’ and refugees’ rights and entitlements and to ensure that those in need of protection are recognised as such. [...] Accurate, reliable and relevant Country of Origin Information (COI) is central to RSD in order to inform decision makers about conditions in the countries of origin of asylum applicants and to assist them in establishing objective criteria as to whether an asylum claim is well founded.” (ARC website: About, undated)

“ARC’s case-specific country reports examine the human rights, legal, social, political and humanitarian situation in asylum seekers’ countries of origin.” (ARC website: Case-specific COI, undated)

The ARC charges an hourly fee for its case-specific research services (ARC website: Case-specific COI, undated). Funding for case-specific research is typically provided by the UK Legal Aid Agency. The ARC also receives funding for thematic research from NGOs and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). (ARC: e-mail response, 19 September 2013)

Scope of reporting:
Geographic: all countries
Thematic: security issues, human rights issues, political developments, socio-economic issues

The ARC conducts research in accordance with the standards and principles laid down by the European Union Common EU Guidelines for Processing Country of Origin Information, the Austrian Red Cross/ACCORD Researching COI Training Manual-2013 Edition, and the International Association for Refugee Law Judges Judicial Criteria for Assessing Country of Origin Information. (ARC: Case-specific COI, undated)

Each country report produced by the ARC “contains case-specific synthesis of the source material”, “identifies relevant excerpts of country information for each issue” and “is fully indexed and paginates original sources with web links”. (ibid.)

Language(s) of publications:
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