About the Project

Missing Migrants
of the Mediterranean

With an on-campus exhibit and online platform and in partnership with a Tunisia-based migrant advocacy organization, this project presents the voice of missing migrants of the Mediterranean. Seeking safe and dignified lives, migrants crossed from Tunisia and other MENA countries into Italy and Europe via the Mediterranean Sea route in recent years. Many do not live to reach their destination. The Italian government and the international community manage rehousing, or burial, of migrants without due process; deaths are tallied as mere statistics, and bodies are not identified nor given due respect. Meanwhile, behind each missing person is family, friend, community.

“When you talk about humanity and talk about democracy, it is all a lie so long as this [plight] exists in the world. Europe and Tunisia always mouth off empty slogansdemocracy, human rights, respect for people – and in front of their eyes is a graveyard, but they did not even do a thingthis is global falsehood.” — Imed Soltani

With an on-campus exhibit and online platform and in partnership with a Tunisia-based migrant advocacy organization, this project presents the voice of missing migrants of the Mediterranean. Seeking safe and dignified lives, migrants crossed from Tunisia and other MENA countries into Italy and Europe via the Mediterranean Sea route in recent years. Many do not live to reach their destination. The Italian government and the international community manage rehousing, or burial, of migrants without due process; deaths are tallied as mere statistics, and bodies are not identified nor given due respect. Meanwhile, behind each missing person is family, friend, community.

“When you talk about humanity and talk about democracy, it is all a lie so long as this [plight] exists in the world. Europe and Tunisia always mouth off empty slogansdemocracy, human rights, respect for people – and in front of their eyes is a graveyard, but they did not even do a thingthis is global falsehood.” — Imed Soltani

Our Research

Mission & values

Our research explores how families navigate that space that toggles between loss and hope, and what it means to pursue action and advocacy, as families search for the loved ones and search for answers. First, we discuss an art exhibit, featuring information and data visualization works created by university students. Second, we discuss an online platform, that draws from interviews, archival research, and exhibit materials. The site aspires to transform data into a tool to motivate policy change and generate awareness and action and to create an accessible platform for advocacy and validation. The two projects aim to counter narratives that depict missing migrants as statistics and to humanize the migrant, as beloved to family, friends, and community.

Our Team

La Terre Pour Tous and the University of Michigan

Our interdisciplinary, transnational team, comprised of faculty, students, and activists, aims to bring social justice and advocacy together with design and technology into a meaningful synthesis in public scholarship.

Gemma Baccini – La Terre Pour Tous

Imed SoltaniLa Terre Pour Tous

Marwen Saidi – La Terre Pour Tous

Odessa Gonzalez Benson, Ph.D.University of Michigan

Vadim Besprozvany, Ph.D.University of Michigan

Bader AlBaderUniversity of Michigan

Antonio SicilianoUniversity of Michigan

Elena GodinUniversity of Michigan

Suzana HaidarUniversity of Michigan

Yessine BaaloucheUniversity of Michigan

Michael Payne – University of Michigan

Kara Daley – University of Michigan

Our Research

Mission & values

Our research explores how families navigate that space that toggles between loss and hope, and what it means to pursue action and advocacy, as families search for the loved ones and search for answers. First, we discuss an art exhibit, featuring information and data visualization works created by university students. Second, we discuss an online platform, that draws from interviews, archival research, and exhibit materials. The site aspires to transform data into a tool to motivate policy change and generate awareness and action and to create an accessible platform for advocacy and validation. The two projects aim to counter narratives that depict missing migrants as statistics and to humanize the migrant, as beloved to family, friends, and community.

Our Team

La Terre Pour Tous and the University of Michigan

Our interdisciplinary, transnational team, comprised of faculty, students, and activists, aims to bring social justice and advocacy together with design and technology into a meaningful synthesis in public scholarship.