Olivia Woldemikael's research focuses on host community reception of refugees in the Global South. Her project is particularly interested in migrant acceptance for which she examines the incentives for local leaders to accommodate refugees. She also looks at the effect of local policies and elite cues on shaping citizen attitudes towards refugees and migrants. Her dissertation uses mixed methods combining interviews and fieldwork with analyses of survey data. Prior to graduate school, Olivia worked on refugee food assistance and development and recovery programs for the UN World Food Programme in Uganda.