Refugee Map

At the height of the refugee crisis at Europe’s borders in the winter of 2015/2016, completely overloaded inflatables crossed from the Turkish coast to the Greek islands every day. Annah Björk and Mattias Beijmo, a journalist and entrepreneur from Sweden, were working on the Greek island of Lesbos to care for the arrivals and got a first-hand impression.

You wrote the book “Båt 370” about your experiences and your political view of developments.

At the end of 2016, an exhibition took place at the Technical Museum in Stockholm City, which shed light on the role of media and messengers at the height of the 2015/2016 crisis and also showed an interactive representation of the data collected by Mattias Beijmo and Annah Björk for the installation. Using chat channels and GPS coordinates provided, the crossings of numerous boats and their occupants could be reconstructed and displayed as interactive logbooks on a map.

Navigation and Content

The visual design of the application was already predetermined. The implementation was done with Leaflet. js as a pure HTML and Javascript solution, which was displayed with a conventional browser in a kiosk environment on a touch screen.

Project duration: 2 weeks from initial request to final version



Animation of individual crossings based on shared location data from messenger paths

Timeline with selection of crossings

Display of chat histories and photos in a pop-up messenger display

Båt 370

Did the Coast Guard come? These are the last words of the seven-year-old Lami before she disappears into the waves of the Aegean Sea. When the sun rises, lifeless bodies lie on the tourist beach. Twelve young men who have managed to swim ashore are standing on a cliff in the sea. It’s January 5, 2016, and Swedish politicians are talking about a refugee pause. The EU is concluding agreements with Turkey to prevent people from fleeing to the Union, while the Mafia-led smuggling of refugees is worth billions. President Erdogan is imprisoning critical journalists in a country that is increasingly resembling a dictatorship. The authorspersonal journey to the truth is a non-fictional thriller about a mass murder with political overtones. Boat 370 is a frightening story from Turkey about what happened at sea, about betrayal and the limits of humanity. (Translation of the volume)

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