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Refugees experience shrinking social, economic, political, and physical spaces at astonishing rates. However, these shrinking spaces are challenging to trace simultaneously and are rarely considered in policymaking or analysis. Using the Rohingya case study, this paper implores policy analysis to include these spaces, conceptually categorizing them into physical, social, and psychological spaces. Here we chronologize the plight of Rohingya refugees and identify how their spaces have changed over time. Our findings reveal four primary causal relationships linked to Rohingya refugees' fluctuating spaces, including: (I) Bangladesh's policy framework has kept the Rohingya largely isolated, yet their public-private partnerships have expanded their space; (ii) Bangladesh has a robust social policy framework, which has contributed to expanding refugees' spaces; (iii) Myanmar's foreign policy framework contributed to justifying war crimes, severely restricting Rohingya's space, and (iv) The lack of a social policy framework in Myanmar lead to a severe lack of protection mechanisms for the Rohingya.