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Transnational Communities - Digaai Meeting


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Digaai platform in the context of transnational communities.

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Transnational Communities - Digaai Meeting

  1. 1. TransnationalCommunities- not your grandfather’s diaspora - Digaai MeetingAlvaro Lima, June 2009
  2. 2. AGENDA:I. Globalization – A Different PerspectiveII. Immigration Studies – A Brief BackgroundIII. What is “Immigrant Transnationalism” Anyway?IV.Traditional versus Transnational LensesV. Measuring TransnationalismVI.Some Implications of TransnationalismVII.Project Portfolio
  3. 3. Globalization – A Different Perspective “compression of our spatial and temporal worlds” (D. Harvey) Globalisation Nation Feudal States Tribes Empires ”Globalization [...] as theGlobalisation as intensification of world-wideAnnihilation of Space/ social relations which linkShrinking of the World distant localities in such a way that local happenings are shaped by events occurring many miles“constraints of Geography away and vice versa.” (Giddensrecede” (M. Waters) 1990, p. 64)Dialectics of globalisation and localisation - glocalisation, global cities -“space ... not only homogenised (and global), but always fragmented aswell. ... has not simply shrunk, but ... been transformed” (S. Kirsch)
  4. 4. Immigration Studies – A Brief Background Traditionally migration studies have been concerned with understanding the origins and the impact of cross-borer flows; These flows have been understood mostly as a one way movement from sending countries to receiving countries; Immigration policies have been almost entirely focused on procedures and prohibitions governing admissions (who? how many? and what kind of immigrants should be admitted?).
  5. 5.  There is a widespread belief that migration is caused by poverty, economic stagnation, and overpopulation in the countries of origin unrelated to receiving countries’ foreign policies, economic needs and broader international economic conditions; While overpopulation, poverty, and economic stagnation all create pressures for migration, there are systematic, structural relations between receiving countries’ policies and migration flows with worldwide evidence of a considerable patterning in the geography of migrations. poverty stagnation overpopulation etc…
  6. 6. Foreign-Born Population of Rich OECD Countries from Developing Countries Population Top Five Total from Percent of Source Top Five Source Country Population Developing Total Countries Countries (millions) Countries Population (percent of (millions) total)United States 281.4 10.1 45.2 Mexico, Philippines, Puerto 28.4 Rico, India, China Morocco, Ecuador,Spain 40.8 1.5 3.7 44.2 Colombia, Argentina, VenezuelaFrance 58.5 3.7 6.4 20.4 Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Turkey, VietnamUK 58.8 5.1 30.1 India, Pakistan, 3.0 Bangladesh, Jamaica, South AfricaNetherlands 16.0 1.2 7.6 48.6 Suriname, Turkey, Indonesia, Morocco, Netherlands AntillesPortugal 10.4 0.5 4.5 62.8 Angola, Mozambique, Brazil, Cape Verde, VenezuelaJapan 127 1.0 69.6 North Korea, South Korea, 1.2 China, Brazil, PhilippinesSource: Let Their People Come, Lant Pritchett, 2006
  7. 7.  Immigrant integration policies (education, training, placement, ESOL, health care, entrepreneurship, citizenship, etc..) are skeletal, ad hoc, under-funded and dominated by the ideology of assimilation – the great melting pot of nations; As Nathan Glazer puts it, “the settlement, adaptation, and progress, or lack of it, of immigrants is largely, in the U.S. context, up to them.” labor market language acquisition housing education etc…
  8. 8.  Re-integration policies for those returning are generally inexistent making the re-settlement process prone to failure feeding back emigration: labor market housing education etc…
  9. 9. What is “Immigrant Transnationalism” Anyway?Transnationalism is “the process by which immigrants forge and sustainmulti-stranded social relations that link together their societies of originand settlement… (they) take actions, make decisions, and developsubjectivities and identities embedded in networks of relationships thatconnect them simultaneously to two or more nation states” (Mandaville2001:45)
  10. 10. Drivers of Transnationalism Developments in the means of transportation and communications have changed the relations between people and places (costs); International migrations have become crucial to the demographic future of many developed countries; Global political transformations and new international legal regimes weakened the state as the only legitimate source of rights; Fostered by global consumption, global production, and immigration, cultural hybridization are substituting folkloric romanticism and political nationalism enshrined as essences of national cultures;
  11. 11.  Contexts of exit and modes of incorporation facilitate or impede, foster or discourage, demand or preclude some or all cross-border activities: Contexts of Exit and Incorporation Context of Exit: Context of Incorporation: Education Level Inclusion & Exclusion Race & Ethnicity Structures Family Wealth Alien versus Citizenship Urban versus Rural Rights Origin Government & Other Government & Other Support Systems Support Systems Race and Ethnicity etc. Structures etc.
  12. 12. Traditional versus Transnational LensesTraditional Lenses: Transnational Lenses: immigration conceptualized as a bipolar relation  immigration conceptualized as flows of cross- between sending and receiving countries border economic, political and social-cultural (moving from there to here) activities (being here and there) emigration is the result of individual search for  emigration is the result of geopolitical interests, economic opportunity, political freedom, etc. global linkages, and economic globalization migrants are assumed to be the poorest of the  migrants are not the poorest of the poor nor do poor they come from the poorest nations immigrants occupy low-skilled jobs in  growth in the service and technology-based agriculture, construction, and manufacturing jobs create opportunities for low as well as high skilled migrants Immigrants steadily shift their contextual focus,  After the initial movement, migrants continue to economic and social activities to receiving maintain ties with their country of origin country immigration should not bring about significant  immigration creates hybrid societies with a change in the receiving society richer cultural milieu 12
  13. 13. Monthly Remittance by Nationality $875 $900 $800 MEASURING $700 $600 TRANSNATIONALISM $500 ABOVE AVERAGE $398 $400 AVERAGE = $294 $331 $278 $274 $300 BELOW AVERAGE $218 $192 $188 $185 $177 $200 $113 $100 $- Purchasing of Nostalgic Products Among Brazilians 50.0% 45.4% Financial Accounts in Country of Origin - Brazil 45.0% 40.0% 37.6% 35.0%40.0% 30.0%35.0% 25.0% 20.5% 28.9% 17.8% 20.0%30.0% 26.0% 15.0%25.0% 10.0% 5.1% 4.9% 3.7% 5.0% 1.6% 0.8% 0.2%20.0% 0.0%15.0%10.0% 5.5%5.0% 1.6% 0.3%0.0% Does not Checking Savings Credit card Investment Foreign have / NR account account account currency savings
  14. 14. Help Beyond Remittances50.0% 46.6%45.0%40.0% 36.80%35.0% ABOVE AVERAGE30.0% 27.0% 22.7%25.0% AVERAGE = 19.2% 20.0%20.0% 15.3% 14.0% BELOW AVERAGE15.0% 10.3% 9.1%10.0% 5.7% 3.7% 5.0% 0.0% MEASURING Support of Hometown AssociationsTRANSNATIONALISM 30.0% 26.3% 25.0% 20.0% 15.0% ABOVE AVERAGE 12.4% 10.0% 10.0% AVERAGE = 6.7% 6.7% 5.0% 4.0% 3.5% BELOW AVERAGE 5.0% 3.3% 2.8% 2.4% 0.0% 0.0% 14
  16. 16. Some Implications of Transnationalism Portability becomes crucial for transnational migrants – education and certification processes; investment and retirement schemes, health insurance, etc.; The concept of “community,” “society,” as well as “the local,” must be redefined as space of flows (relationships), pluri-local and nation-state-boarder spanning, instead of bounded geographic places – geographic and social container spaces; Transnational immigrant entrepreneurs’ contributions to the economy have to be recognized as such and not as just “ethnic;” Nation-state ideals of identity in both sending and receiving countries are challenged by transnational practices – double citizenship, XXXX; States must re-conceive immigration and adapt their policies and practices to accommodate transnational realities;
  17. 17. First Generation Innovation Portfolio   Transnational Index  Diaspora Capital Services  English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)  Transnational Fellows  Research Projects & Publications
  18. 18. 4 million Brazilians using worldwide to: communicate home and with each other - social networking; register their every day experiences; build unique video, photos, audio and text archives; search newspapers, magazines, websites; contribute to Brazilian diaspora history - wiki; store personal information using private web space; transact on line. 18
  19. 19. Transnational Index What:  Data and survey-based ranking of communities by their degree of transnationalism published annually in partnership with national media Why:  create awareness among policy makers of transnational phenomena  identify social and commercial innovation opportunities for transnational immigrant communities  build consciousness among transnational immigrants of unique potential 19