Public Policy and Advocacy: Understanding Diaspora Advocacy


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Public Policy and Advocacy: Understanding Diaspora Advocacy

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Public Policy and Advocacy: Understanding Diaspora Advocacy

  1. 1. Public Policy and Advocacy:Understanding Diaspora Advocacy GRFDT National Seminar Jawaharlal Nehru University 12 May 2012 Kamala Kanta Dash, PhD Candidate Public Policy and South Asian Studies Monash University, Australia Email:
  2. 2. Background and Structure• PhD Research: Community Engagement in Public Policy in India and Australia• Whether Diasporas as global actors impact and influence Public Policy ?• Work in Progress: To be published as a working paper for GRFDT• Structure of the presentation:1-Public Policy and Advocacy2-Diaspora Advocacy3-Case study of US India Political Action Committee (USINPAC)
  3. 3. Initial Investigation• Voice After Exit: Diaspora Advocacy, Kathleen Newland (2010), Migration Policy Institute• Indian Diaspora in Global Advocacy, Ajay Gandhi (2002), Global Networks• The US India Political Action Committee ( established in 2002
  4. 4. Public Policy and Advocacy• Public Policy and advocacy go together.• Policy advocacy as a process shapes policy discourses, identifies loopholes to strengthen policy making and facilitates its effective implementation.• Higher the stake, strength and influence of the group, higher are the impact of its advocacy on policy.
  5. 5. What is Policy Advocacy• Policy advocacy is the process of negotiating and mediating a dialogue through which influential networks, opinion leaders, and, ultimately, decision makers take ownership of your ideas, evidence, and proposals, and subsequently act upon them. (Eóin Young & Lisa Quinn, 2012)
  6. 6. Who is an Advocate?• The most basic meaning of advocacy is to represent, promote, or defend some person(s), interest, or opinion• OED defines advocate is a person who puts a case on someone else’s behalf and also• a person who publicly supports or recommends a particular cause or policy
  7. 7. Diaspora Advocacy• Diaspora communities, organizations, and individuals are increasingly vocal and influential in their countries of origin and of settlement .• While government is their primary target, they also seek to influence international organizations, the media, the private sector, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and other actors. Kathleen Newland (2010)
  8. 8. Diaspora Advocacy-II• Diaspora advocacy has become at once more immediate and more abundant in the era of electronic communications, as the ease of organizing diaspora members across distances and national boundaries has removed old constraints. Web sites, discussion groups, and social networks of diaspora members have proliferated, resulting in a multiplication of the organizational potential of groups and even individuals. Kathleen Newland (2010)
  9. 9. Main Focuses of Diaspora Advocacy? Kathleen Newland (2010)• Advocating for Overseas Voting Rights and Dual Nationality• Advocating for Caste, Ethnic, and Religious Rights• Advocating for Development and Disaster Relief• Advocating for Commerce
  10. 10. Methods of Diaspora Advocacy Kathleen Newland (2010)• Lobbying and Direct Participation in Government• Lawsuits• Fundraising• Electoral Politics and Direct Participation in Government• Making Use of Media for Advocacy: From Postcards to Online Posts• Promoting (and Protesting) Countries of Origin Through Art and Media• The Power of the Image• Demonstrations
  11. 11. Indian Diaspora Advocacy in the US• Forget the Israel Lobby. The Hills Next Big Player Is Made in India (Mira Kamdar, Washington Post, 2007)• Working for India or against Islam? Islamophobia in Indian American Lobbies (Ingrid Therwath, 2007, SAMAJ)• American India Foundation• The US India Political Action Committee
  12. 12. US India Political Action Committee• Genesis• Inspiration• Objective and Vision• Areas of Focus• Achievements• Future Goals
  13. 13. Suggestions and Questions Thank You