Salutogenic and Pathogenic Factors among Young Adult Refugees in Germany: An Exploratory Study

Avital Laufer, Maria Böttche, Marco Walg, Anwar Khatib, Carmel Maoz-Dotan, Hiam Hassan, Michal Finkelstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this cross-sectional study, we explored the association of salutogenic variables-resilience and quality of life (QOL)-with posttraumatic stress (PTS) and depressive symptoms of 55 refugees who came to Germany as minors from various disputed Middle East and Africa countries. Results revealed that 53 per cent of participants showed a clinically relevant level of PTS, and 32 per cent scored in the clinical range for depression. Levels of resilience and QOL were moderate. Regression models revealed that resilience was the only significant variable associated with PTS over and above traumatic events and demographic variables. Pre-migration traumatic events and QOL were found to be significant variables associated with depression. Quality of life was found to mediate the relation between resilience and depression. Pre-and peri-Traumatic events were not associated with resilience or QOL. Post-migration stressors were negatively associated with resilience and QOL. These findings suggest that the impact of forced migration on the young adults' adjustment should be investigated not only in terms of psychological symptoms, but also in terms of resilience and QOL. In addition, therapeutic interventions should focus not only on diminishing psychological difficulties, but also in helping these young refugees increase, build, and maintain resilience and QOL.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)968-987
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Refugee Studies
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Author(s) 2022. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.


  • PTS
  • depression
  • quality of life
  • refugees
  • resilience

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Political Science and International Relations


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