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Transnationalism: Diaspora-Homeland Development

Author(s): Rubin Patterson


Source: Social Forces, Vol. 84, No. 4 (Jun., 2006), pp. 1891-1907
Published by: University of North Carolina Press
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3844481
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Transnationalism:Diaspora-HomelandDevelopment
RubinPatterson,Universityof Toledo

Abstract
Basedon detectedcorrelationsbetweenthe strategiccollaborationof U.S.-baseddiasporas
and their respectiveancestralhomelandson the one hand and the socioeconomicand
technologicaldevelopmentof thosehomelandson the other,thispaper,whichprovidesa
conceptualfoundation of the correlation,attempts to ignite a new area of researchon
transnationalismand developmentin the global South. The conceptualfoundation
suggestingsuchan importantcorrelationis ensconcedin the theoreticalcontextsof world
rankedstatusof a nationin some
systemsand racialformationtheories.Thehierarchically
the
ranked
status
its
waysreflects hierarchically
of diasporain the UnitedStates.Strategic
collaborationand braincirculationbetweenthe diasporaand the homelandcanfavorably
affectthe statusof transnationalcommunities,both within the UnitedStatesand within
the widerglobalsystem.
Introduction
Transnationalism1
is an emergentfieldof studywitha focus on citizenswho,thoughmigrating
frompoorto richcountries,manageto constructand nurturesocialfieldsthatintimatelylink
theirrespectivehomelandsand theirnew diasporiclocations.Whencitizensof the global
South,withadvancedhumancapital,migrateto a richWesternsociety such as the United
States andthey maintainstrategicdialecticalinterplaybetweenthe old and new locations,
braincirculation
whensuchtalentedcitizensmigrateto a richsocietyand
occurs.Conversely,
are permanentlyuprootedfromthe homeland,withoutfutureinvolvementin its affairs,the
lattersuffersa braindrain.ThoseSouthernnationsandregionsthatsupportthe emigration
of
of
the
and
numbers
their
nationals
to
United
States
those
who
large
diasporans
engage in
the buildingof institutions,conductingtransactionsand generallyinfluencinglocal and
nationalevents in theirrespectivehomelands- have a huge comparativeadvantageover
those Southernnationsand regionsthatfailto send theirnationalsto the UnitedStates or
those diasporanswho failto nurture
transnational
socialfieldswiththe homeland.
Transnationalism
and braincirculation
occurwithseveralAsiannations,increasingly
with
some Latinnations,and not much at all with Sub-Saharan
Africannations.In additionto
transnationalism
andsuggesting
developinga conceptualfoundationof strategically-oriented
thatit canaccelerateandextendsocioeconomicandtechnologicaldevelopmentinthe South,
this paper exploresreasons that partiallyaccount for the relativelack of such strategic
inSub-Saharan
Africa.Potential
transnationalism
advantagesstemmingfromAfrican
emigration
to developedcountriesare so greatthat Africangovernmentsshould aid and abet such
shouldnotbe consideredagainstan idealworldwhereinallAfrican
Thisproposition
emigration.
withfellow
nationalscanfindproductive
workintheircountryof birthas theylaborcollectively
citizensto builda prosperoussociety.2Rather,
the proposition
shouldbe consideredagainstthe
to nationaland
realworld in which Africancitizensare inhibitedfrom freelycontributing
constraints.
professional
developmentdueto economicandpolitical
Directallcorrespondence
to:RubinPatterson,
&Anthropology,
Toledo,
University
ofToledo,
Sociology
Ohio43606.E-mail:rpatter@utnet.utoledo.edu.
? The Universityof NorthCarolinaPress

Social Forces, Volume 84, Number4, June 2006

1892 * SocialForcesVolume84, Number4 * June2006

is anefficient
Comparative
analysespresentedinthispapersuggest thattransnationalism
means of transferringknowledge,skills and wealth from core nations to those in the
andthe periphery.
Varioustypes of evidenceexistto supportthe chiefclaimto
semiperiphery
knowledgepresentedin this paper.On an abstractlevel, a combinationof diffusionand
the
expansionof technicalknowledgeand skillshas characterized
indigenously-generated
historyof advancementin humansocieties. JaredDiamond,in Guns,Germs,and Steel:A
ShortHistoryof Everybodyforthe Last1,300 Years,notes thatagriculture,
wheels, writing,
andotherearlierwatershedtechnologicaldevelopmentsrarelyoccurredde novo.
metallurgy
One way or anotherthe technologies are diffusedor transferredto other non-inventing
societies. Knowledgeand skillshave alwaysbeen importedfromthe outside,sometimes
andothertimesaggressively,sometimeswithbroadlyfavorableoutcomesandat
grudgingly
othertimes farless so. Whilethe movementcertainlyis not linear,overalladvancementsin
complexityandefficacyof technicalknowledgeandskillshavebeen manifest.Inadditionto
this sublimeworldwidepanoramic
view of how knowledgeandskillshaveprogressedalong
with theirimpacton social groupsacross millennia,this paperreflectson moreconcrete
historicalrecordsof specific countriesoverthe past few decades. Manycountries,from
Chinato South Koreato Indiaand others, have demonstratedthat developmentof the
homelandcan be acceleratedbymakingstrategicuse of theirdiasporasin NorthAmericaand
WesternEurope.Wheresimplythe UnitedStates is used hereas a surrogate,bothsocieties
are majorengines of technical knowledge and skills of the 20thand early21t centuries. Sheffer

(1996) notes that membersof a prosperousdiasporiccommunity"cancontributemore


financialresourcesandthattheiraccess to powerfulsegments inthe host countrybecomes
easier...andthe talent,acumen,anddedicationthatareneededfor[homelanddevelopment]
become moreavailable."
(p.61)
as partof a
Thoughthis paperconcludeswiththe qualifiedvalidationof braincirculation
viabledevelopmentstrategyfor ThirdWorldnations,it is not Pollyannaish
aboutassured
immediatedisruptions
orunassuredautomaticbenefitsforemigrant-sending
countries.Such
viewsarecheckedbyobservationssuchas the one by Randall
Tobias,the currentglobalAIDS
coordinatorin the Bush administration:"[T]herewere more Ethiopian-trained
doctors
in
than
in
York
Times
The
[all
(New
2004:A22)
[alone]
of]
Ethiopia."
practicing Chicago
immediatedisruptionsto Ethiopia'snationaldevelopmentas a consequence of such
emigrationof technicaltalentarepalpable.Thispaperarguesthat,as a discreteisolate,such
to braindraining.However,if itwere partof a national,if not
wouldbe tantamount
emigration
in
Africa
fora "diaspora-homeland
collaborative
development"
regional,strategiccampaign
as documentedwithothertransnational
agendaof braincirculation,
groupsinthis paper,the
situationwouldlikelybe less unnerving.
There are several ways to make this case for Africantransnationalism.
One is the
while
is
The
another
the
approach.
approach
avoidance-of-the-negative
pursuit-of-the-positive
latterapproachwillbe used inthis paper.Theformerarguesthatemigrationis inevitablein
(1991)
lightof difficultandstultifying
livingconditionsfoundinmanyAfricancountries.Apraku
makesthiscase byaskinga set of poignantandobviousquestions:"[D]oesAfricanecessarily
benefitfromkeepingits skilledmanpowerhome,whetheror notthey engage in productive
economicactivity?Arethe corrupt,unmotivated,
andfrustrated,
yet highlytrainedsegments
of the Africanintelligentsiawho are livingoff the government(mainlyin the publicsector)
morebeneficialto Africathantheiremigrantcolleagueswho chose to migrateoverseasfor
additionaltrainingand experience,who supporttheirfamiliesandfriendswithremittances,
and havebecome exposedto new technology,ideas,and perspectives?"
(pp.57-58)A more
instructiveapproachis the pursuit-of-the
positiveapproach,whichinvolvesexaminingways
that countries experience socioeconomic development through diaspora-homeland
collaboration.

Transnationalism:
Diaspora-Homeland
Development * 1893

Africa,of course, is a continent,not a countryas in the othercases exploredhere to


Africahas 48. This
explainthis study's proposition.Africahas 54 states and Sub-Saharan
studyfocuses on the Sub-Saharan
regionsince, byfar,most AfricandescendantsinAmerica
Africa
regardthatregionas theirancestralhomeland.Nevertheless,comparingSub-Saharan
to the singularstates of China,SouthKorea,India,Mexicoand Israelis inconsistenton the
surface.However,upondeeperinspectionof the objectivesandtechniquesof the study,the
validityand utilityof makingsuch a comparisonbecome evident. In evaluatingthe role
diasporashaveplayedin the developmentof China,SouthKorea,India,Mexicoand Israel,3
we are analyzingthe activitiesof a diasporiccommunityon behalfof a given individual
Africandiasporainthe
homelandstate. Becauseof the uniquemake-upof the Sub-Saharan
of it is unableto pointto a singlestate as its homeland.With
UnitedStates,the vast majority
most AfricanAmericansunableto identifya specific homelandstate, theirproclivityis to
area,as theirhomeland.Inthissense,
"adopt"allof the continent,orat leastthe Sub-Saharan
the Africandiaspora-homeland
projectis a sociologicalconstruct,unlikeinthe singularcase
withthe Africancase is thateach of the 48 Substate situations.Anotheranalytical
peculiarity
Saharanstates pursueswhat is perceived,or at least is argued,as its individualnational
interestsat anygivenmoment.These states wouldhaveto worktogetherto experiencethe
type of strategicimpactwroughtbythe othertransnational
groupscoveredinthis study.The
individual
states of the studyarenot burdenedwiththis levelof complexity.
Thispaperwilldevelopthe conceptualmodelthatcountriesthathavemoresuccessfully
andtechnologically
overthe pastfourdecadeshavedone more
developedsocioeconomically
andtechnologytransferon behalfof the
U.S.-basedtransnational
lobbying,wealthrepatriation
homelandby U.S.-baseddiasporas.The corollaryis that:those Southernnationsthat have
andtechnologytransferhave
done less U.S.-basedtransnational
lobbying,wealthrepatriation
less
and
successfullysocioeconomically technologically.
developed
Theory and Method
Theory
communitiesthatadvancetheirancestralhomelandsthroughstrategicbrain
Transnational
circulationare best examinedin the context of the historicaldevelopmentof the modern
Withregardto class andstatus,nationsinthe worldandracialworldsystemandracialization.
ethnic groups in the world- a microcosmof which exists in the UnitedStates - are
ordered.Worldsystems theoryschematizesthe hierarchyamong nationsas
hierarchically
andperiphery.
white,richandmilitarily
core, semiperiphery
powerfulWestern
Predominantly
Asianand LatinAmerican
nationsare generallyregardedas the core; newlyindustrialized
andmost of Africa
nationsas wellas non-coreWesternnationsconstitutethe semiperiphery;
alongwiththe poorestLatinAmericanand Southand SoutheastAsiannationsmakeupthe
inAmericagenerallyreflectsthisglobalhierarchy
Theracial-ethnic
hierarchy
among
periphery.
nations(Henry1999;Hewitt2000).As MiriSong (2004)notes, "Inthe USA,thereappearsto
be a fairlywidespreadview,bothamong manyacademicsandthe widerpublic,thatwhite
AfricanAmericansat the bottom(withsporadic
Americansareat the top of a racialhierarchy,
referenceto NativeAmericansas an equallyoppressedgroup),and groupssuch as Asian
AmericansandLatinossomewherein between."(p.861)
inAmericain his predictionof a
Bonilla-Silva
(2004)furtherspells out this racialhierarchy
generalthree-categoryracialscheme: whites, honorarywhites and collectiveblacks.He
and,
whites,new 'white'immigrants
hypothesizesthat"thewhitegroupwillinclude'traditional

1894 * SocialForcesVolume84, Number4 * June2006

inthe nearfuture,totallyassiEmilated
whiteLatinos...,lighter-skinned
andother
multiracials...,
racialgrouporhonorary
whiteswillcomprisemost light-skinned
sub-groups;the intermediate
Latinos...,Japanese Americans,KoreanAmericans,Asian Indians,Chinese Americans,
thatthe collectiveblackgroupwill
andmost MiddleEasternAmericans;andfinally,
Filippinos,
andLaotians."
includeblacks,dark-skinned
Latinos,Vietnamese,Cambodians
(pp.932-3)
Worldsystems theorycontends that nationspossess changinglevels of upwardand
downwardmobilityin the world economy.Accordingto Wallerstein(1979), nationscan
advancefromthe peripheryto the semiperiphery
(2)accepting
by (1)seizingopportunities,
invitationsfrom core nations,or (3) devising self-reliance.Peripheryand semiperiphery
andcollectively,
face a cacophanyof constraining
nations,individually
dynamicsoperatingto
keepthemin checkandto servethe interestof core nations.As OliverC. Cox(1964)argued
inthe classicCapitalism
AsA System,"although
the socialprocessesof the capitalistsystem
of
the
imitation
of
the
may encourage
practices
leading[core]societies, the system itself
cannotaccommodateindiscriminate
advancementof peoples."(p. 171)Notwithstanding
the
constrainingforces againstperipheralpeoples in the narrowinterestsof core nations,the
nationis not immutable.Thus,allnationshave
status of a givenperipheryor semiperiphery
it
is
and
mobilized in some relative to others.
more
agency, though
developed
is one agenticstrategyof advancinga nation'sstatus fromthe periphery
Transnationalism
(Patterson2005b).
is bidirectional.
First,Southern-based
Developmentthroughstrategictransnationalism
in
white
racial-ethnic
the
United
States
that
are
of
the
status
tendto possess
honorary
groups
greaterhuman,socialand economiccapital,whichmeans they mayhavea greatermeans
of assistingthe homeland.Second,approaching
the transnational
communityfromSouthern
nationsthatareinthe semiperiphery,
they areina betterpositionto assist membersof their
ethnic kinin the UnitedStates, eitherthroughcapitaland connectionsor simplythrough
"statuscapital."Inotherwords,Americanimmigrantsare bothassimilatedintotheirracialethnicgroupandareaccordedthe generalstatusof the group.
States arecentralto the processes of racialformationand hierarchy
(Winant2000),both
in
and
the
of the 21st
However,
postmodern,Knowledge-Age
intranationally internationally.
century,states and regimesuse race-neutral
languageand policiesthat recreateracialand
nationalhierarchies
the globalpoliticoeconomic
system. Doane(2003)concludes
throughout
that"'color-blind'
ideologyplaysan importantroleinthe maintenanceof whitehegemony.As
an organizedset of claimsaboutrace,colorblindnessrests on the seeminglyunassailable
moralfoundationsof equality,whichis the basisforits politicalstrength.Whatis overlooked
- or deliberatelymasked- is the persistenceof racialstratification
andthe ongoingroleof
in reproducing
socialinstitutions
socialinequality..."
(p. 13)Withcolor-blind
policiesinAmerica
today,school and residentialsegregationand white-blackwealthgap are as greatas they
were duringthe dayswhen rawJimCrowlawsandpolicieswere conspicuouslyformulated
andexpresslyimplemented.A parallelexistsat the international
level.Wealthandtechnology
inequalitybetween the West and the Southare greatertodaythanin the early1960s,the
periodwhenoppressive,racistcolonialismwas comingto an end.Whilebeing"race-neutral,"
financialandtraderegimesthatdeterminethe globaleconomy- such as the
international
- haveserved
International
MonetaryFund,the WorldBankandthe WorldTradeOrganization
to reproducea nationalhierarchyfor the globalsystem. Due primarily
to this parallel,the
hierarchical
statusof racial-ethnic
groupsinAmericatends to correspondto the hierarchical
statusof nationsinthe globalsystem. One maynotethe elevatedstatus in past decadesof
Americansand in morerecentyearsthe statuselevationof India-Asian
SouthKorea-Korean
IndianAmericans.As Wallerstein
stablereality,
(1991)argues,peoplehoodis not"aprimordial
buta complex,clay-likehistoricalproductof the capitalistworld-economy
throughwhichthe
antagonisticforcesstrugglewitheach other."(p.85)

Transnationalism:
Diaspora-Homeland
Development * 1895

Historyshows thatthe Westerncountries'effectivepoliticalstrategyof avoidingracein


the principal
international
regimestheydominatehas resultedingainsforthese nations.Left
to their own devices, transnationalrace-neutraleconomic agendas recreate Western
dominance.As criticalracetheorymaysuggest, non-white(non-Western
at the international
and
level)peoples would haveto mobilizetheiragency in partby avoidingrace-neutrality
pursuingagendas that allowfor more equitabledisbursementof sociallyvaluedrewards.
of braincirculationon the partof Chinese,Koreans,Indiansand
Strategictransnationalism
morerecentlyMexicansis a formof politicoeconomic
agencyto stem the predominanceof
the West.Theirindividual
transnational-level
has
agency been sufficientlypowerfulenoughto
overcomethe impetusof globaleconomicregimesagainstthem.
- notwithstanding
Africanpeoplesarearguably
at the bottomof the globalhierarchy
some
and
efforts
and
historical ongoingagentic
dueto greaterconstraints insufficient
agencythus
far.Havingblackson the bottomof the hierarchyis not a productof historicalaccident.
historicalendeavorby
Instead,as Joe Feagin(2000)argues,it is the productof a long-running
whitesto maintainracismmost intenselytrainedagainstblacks.HoraceCampbell(1994)is
one of manywho havestudiedeffortsbythe Westto defeatpan-Africanism,
fromU.S.efforts
in breakingthe backof the GarveyMovementto Franceand England'srelentlessworkin
derailingmass-centeredpostcolonialstruggles in Africa.Afterthe Africandiasporain the
braincirculationcommensurate
UnitedStates establishesa levelof strategictransnational
withthe constrainingforces of reigningWestern-dominated
race-neutralregimes,African
in
will
have
too
the
world
peoples
likely
upwardmobility
system (Patterson2005a).
Method
A mixedsystem of most similarand dissimilarstrategyis utilizedin the study,which is
regardedas a much more powerfulanalytictool than either of the two independently
(DeFelice1986;Frendreis
1983).Countriesandtransnational
groupswithsimilaroutcomesof
homelandsocioeconomicand technologicaldevelopment,andwith comparablevalues of
operativefactorshelpingto generatethose outcomes(i.e.,diasporicinfluenceon U.S.public
policy,both foreign and domestic; technologytransfer;and financialcontributions),are
compared conceptuallyto cases with categoricallydifferentoutcomes of homeland
socioeconomic and technologicaldevelopment,and with equallycategoricallydifferent
valuesof the same operativefactors.Theideawas to studya set of countriesandassociated
transnationals
withone levelof outcomeon a givenvariable(i.e.,homelanddevelopment)those withmere gradational
differences- and comparethem withanotherset of countries
with categoricallydifferentlevels of outcomes on the same
and associatedtransnationals
dependentvariable,givenvaryinginputsto the same independentvariables(i.e., diasporahomelandcollaborative
development).
Thispaperposits, based on the studyof similarand dissimilartrendsoverfourdecades,
thatAfricannationswillexperiencemorerapidandconsequentialdevelopmentiftherewere
braincirculation.
Nominalcomparisonsaremadeto inform
moresuchstrategictransnational
variablesroughlymatchoutcomes(Mahoney2000).Additional
us of whatexplanatory
studies
can move beyond the mere detection of operativevariablesin relationto outcomes by
observingand measuringquantitativevariationsof the operativevariablesin relationto
1971).Whilethis studyhas conductedsome "patternmatching
varyingoutcomes (Lijphart
and processtracing,"clearlydetailedcase studies of each of the transnational
groupsand
countries,andsub-regions(inthe case of Sub-Saharan
Africa)coveredwillprovideadditional
insightsintothe specific mechanismsbetween the operativefactorsand outcomes. And
when enoughof these detailedcase studiesandsmall-Ncomparativeanalyticstudies have

1896 * SocialForcesVolume84, Number4 * June2006

been conductedwithconcentratedattentionon these variables,inferential


statisticalanalysis
willprovideadditional
clarification.
Thefirstmeasureof strategicdiaspora-homeland
collaboration
is the levelof influencethe
diasporiccommunityhas withthe host state on behalfof the homeland.Leadersof some
withthe homelandstate inattemptsto affectthe
diasporiccommunitiesworkcollaboratively
and its foreignpublicpolicy(e.g.,
host state's domestic publicpolicy(e.g., immigration)
foreignaid)ina mannerperceivedto be advantageousto the homeland.Anothermeasureof
this strategiccollaborationis technologytransfer.The type of technologytransferhere
involvesdiasporictechnologists in rich,technologically-advanced
countriesinvestingin
to researchanddevelopment,andteachingscienceand
technologyenterprises,contributing
engineeringcourses in universities,all in the homeland.Some homelandstates work
nationalsin richcounties to facilitatethis
strategicallywith theirtechnologically-talented
transfer
while
other
do
not.
The
finalstrategiccollaborationmeasureis
states
technology
financialcontribution.Aggregate financialcontributionscan be of two types, namely,
remittancesandinvestment.Remittancesarefinancialcontributions
fromworkersinforeign
countriesto relativesandfriends;such fundsare mostlyalwaysfromrichto poorcountries.
remittancesin2004werefrom
Seventypercentof the world's$216billionofficialinternational
richto poorcountries(Ratha2005).Investmentsby diasporansintotheirhomelandscan be
critical.Suchinvestmentshelpto accelerategrowthandupgradethe homelandeconomy.
Diasporas
inthisstudy- building
onworkbySafran(1991)-refersto a peopledispersedfromtheir
Diaspora
originalhomeland,a peoplepossessinga collectivememoryandmythaboutandsentimental
linksto thathomeland,
whichfostersa sense of sympathyandsolidarity
withcoand/ormaterial
intheancestralhomeland.
ethnicdiasporans
andwithputativebrethren
Asthisdefinition
implies,
diasporiccommunitiescan be as concreteas individuals
dispersedfrom,yet withtangible,onas ideological
as
goingconnectionsto, a givenclanina givenvillageina homelandor,conversely,
a constructormythabouta homelandinwhichspecificindividuals
oreventheirparentsortheir
havenevervisited,muchless resided.Thepointis thata memberof a transnational
grandparents
who has neverlivedinthe homelandcan havean even greatersense of obligation
community
to supportthe homelandas anothermemberwhowas bornthere.
collaborativedevelopmentis foundedon sentimentaland material
Diaspora-homeland
argumentsfor a boundedethnicgroup,both withinthe diasporaand between it and its
homeland.The sentimentalbonds among co-ethnicsare supposed to be "a given"and
emotionallycoercive.Ineffablefeelingsof affinitytowardfellow ethnicgroupmembersare
frequentlystrong because personal and collective identities are often conflated in
linkedwithotheridentities,such as
complicatedways. Personalidentityis also undoubtedly
class, businessassociationsandprofessionalstanding,butsuch linkagesareless organically
unifiedrelativeto the personal/collective
Personalidentityis, afterall,
identity-conflation.
sociallyconstructedand sociallyreinforced.Socializationaroundthe indeliblequalityof
"racially-based"
ethnicityaffects the core of one's identitymorethantransitoryidentities.
Ethnicgroupmembersare socializedaroundemotionallyevocativeissues such as their
commonancestralheritage,fictiveextendedfamilyand mutualmythologicalexperiences.
boundaries,
Conspicuousdifferencesexist between ethnicgroupsin terms of maintaining
mutualmythological
those who do moreof
burnishing
experiencesandreinforcing
solidarity;
these tendto be moreunifiedthanthose who do less.
Witheach ethnicgroup,personaland collectiveidentity-conflation
is wrappedup in a
sharedsense of vulnerabilities
andanxietiesconcerningthe political,socialandeconomic

Transnationalism:
Diaspora-Homeland
Development ? 1897

arejudgedin parton theirethnicity.Sentimental


landscape.Thismattersbecause individuals
prideandembarrassmentin conjunctionwith materialopportunitiesand constraintsare all
affectedby a person'sgroupmembershipas well as by the rankingof thatgroupin society
and indeedin the world.Ina worldwhere ethnicitymatters,there is a materialinterestin
havingone's ethnicgroupelevatedinthe world'shierarchy.
Development In, Through and By the Diaspora
Whileglobalforces are influencingthe size and politicaldynamismof multiethnicgroupsin
America,these groups are simultaneouslyinfluencingAmericanpower, wealth and
technologystorehouse on behalfof theirancestralhomelands.Esman(2000)succinctly
relationsbelow:
explainsthe connectionsbetweendiasporasandinternational
The continuinglinksbetween diasporasand homelands can be
politicized,and this is their majorsignificance in the study of
international
relations.Diasporasolidaritiescan be mobilizedand
focused to influencepoliticaloutcomes in the home countryto
provideeconomic, diplomaticand even militaryassistanceto the
home countryor to seek protectionand help fromits government.
Likewise,the governmentof the home countrymay call on the
diasporacommunityforeconomicorpoliticalsupport,and the host
to
country'sgovernmentmayattemptto use the diasporacommunity
promoteits interestsvis-a-visthe home countryWiththeirvariable
andpropensitiesto exertinfluenceon behalf
capacities,opportunities
of theirdomesticor externalinterests,diasporacommunitiescan be
regardedas interestgroupsandas politicalactors.(p.318)
A threefoldclassificationscheme is applicablewhen the linkagesof diasporaand
developmentareexamined(Mohann2000):
* Developmentin the diaspora
* Developmentthroughthe diaspora
* Developmentby the diaspora
Developmentin the diasporarelatesto the poolingof financialcapital,intellectual
capitaland
politicalcapitalby membersof an ethniccommunityforthe purposeof growingwealthand
fora measureof securityandindependenceinAmerica.Inthe ancestralhomeland
providing
in question,the state maylendsupportto membersof the diasporainthe UnitedStatesfor
two reasons:first,to helpits nationalsorethnickinsucceed fortheirown good, andsecond,
and probablymore importantto the state, to help its nationalsbecome financiallyand
to the developmentand
politically
powerfulenoughto contributeeffectivelyandsignificantly
securityof the homeland.Anexamplewouldbe howthe SouthKoreanstate aidedits ethnic
inCalifornia
inthe 1960sand 1970s.Today,SouthKoreais the world's1 thlargest
kin,primarily
fromautomobilesto seafaringtankersandcontainerships(i.e.,
exporter,
exportingeverything
it is the world's largest shipbuildingnation)to computer chips and countless other
andtelecommunications
sophisticatedindustrial
products.However,justa few shortdecades
SouthKoreanexportproductwas wigs. TheKoreanExportBank(KEB)
ago, a principal
helped
in SouthKoreaand SouthKoreanimmigrant
wig manufactures
wig wholesalesand retailers
in the UnitedStates with subsidizedloans.The almost immediateresultof this strategic

1898 * SocialForcesVolume84, Number4 * June2006

collaboration
was a jumpinthe SouthKoreanmarketshareof wigs inthe
diaspora-homeland
UnitedStates,froma mere5 percentin 1965to 89 percentin 1972.KEBeven openeda U.S.
branchin LosAngelesin 1967to furtherassist withbusiness lendingto Koreanimmigrants
(Chin,YoonandSmith1996).Theimmigrants
gainedinexperienceandconfidenceinthe wig
andotherhaircareandbeautysupplybusinessesthatmadethem moreadeptat penetrating
in poorminority
communitiesandbeyond.
numerousothermarkets,particularly
to the developmentof theSouth
As Choi(2003)pointsout,"ethnicKoreanshavecontributed
Koreaneconomy by transferring
their knowledgeand skills - which they obtainedand
(p.25)The
strengthenedinthe moreadvancedcountriesof theirresidence- to theirhomeland."
a networkof directandindirectmeansof influencing
SouthKoreanstate has longmaintained
"theSouthKorean
the diaspora.Clearly,
governmenthas sponsoredprogramsforprofessional
emigrantsseekingto buildbusinessesabroad,withthe expectationof directfinancialbenefits
to Korea."(Shain1999: 170) The governmentalso providedfree languageeducationfor
professionals,such as computerscientists,who were preparingto immigrateto the United
countries.Forthose planningto starta business
States,Japanandotherhighlyindustrialized
abroad,the governmentprovidedloansupto $200,000(Weiner1995).
resideinthe diaspora,tradebetweenthatcountryand
Studiesshowthat,whereverKoreans
SouthKoreais positivelyaffected.Inotherwords,the largerthe Koreandiasporaof a given
country,ingeneral,the greaterthe tradebetweenthe "host"countryandSouthKoreatendsto
be (Choi).
within
Developmentthroughthe diasporarefersto developmentas a resultof networking
and between diasporasof the same ethnicgroupin differentpartsof the world.A classic
exampleof developmentthroughthe diasporainvolvesoverseas Chinese.Mainlandand
overseasChineseas an economicblocconstitutesthe thirdlargesteconomyinthe world.The
Chineseeconomicblocof PRC,Taiwan,SingaporeandHongKongaloneis the world'slargest
of the
exporter.Nearly80 percentof overseasChineseliveinSoutheastAsia.Theirproportion
totalpopulationin manyof these SoutheastAsiannations,however,is low.Forexample,the
Chineseshareof the populationsof Indonesia,the Philippinesand Thailandrangesfrom3
percentto 10 percent;however,overseasChinesecontrolmorethan80 percentof the business
some 80 percentof the
equityinthese countries(Cheong2003).As forSingaporeandTaiwan,
areethnicChinese,andtheyalso controlthe lion'sshareof the businessequityin
populations
these two countries.As for overseas Chinesein the UnitedStates, they have particularly
fields,and they have helpedto transfersuch
distinguishedthemselves in high-technology
technologyto PRCandTaiwan.By1998,20 percentof startuphigh-techcompaniesinSilicon
two-way
Valleywere byethnicChinese."Theregion'sChineseengineersconstructeda vibrant
(Saxenian1999:
bridgeconnectingthe technologycommunitiesinSiliconValleyandTaiwan..."
inChinesetransnational
communitiesis conspicuously
successful.
53)Thedialectical
interplay
Since Deng Xiopingopened up the countryin 1978, overseas Chinesehave been the
principalinvestorsin the PRC.Presently,Chinarankssecond behindthe UnitedStates in
recipientsof foreigndirectinvestment.In2003,totalFDIintoChinawas $57 billion(UNCTAD
2004).Thus,in 1991,LeeKuanYew,the foundingpresidentof Singapore,andDengcollectively
Convention
(WCEC)
(Cheong).Bythe sixth
presidedoverthefirstWorldChineseEntrepreneurs'
the locationof the gathering,fromsome
WCEC,ethnicChinesewere descendingon Nanjing,
77 diasporicChinesecommunitiesaroundthe world.Atthatmeeting,whereBeijinginvested
morethan$1 billionto strengthendiaspora-homeland
it was resolvedthatthe
collaboration,
willleadthe globaleconomicblocof overseasChinese(Cheong).
mainland
Thereareimportant
lessonsforAfricansandothersto gleanfromthese diaspora-homeland
collaborative
developmentexperiences.Whereasthe mainlandis encouragingsuccessful
forpurposesof ancestralhomelanddevelopment
overseasChineseto invest,if notrepatriate,
andthe pursuitof personalfortune,4
African
many
governmentsoftenlooksuspiciouslyattheir

Transnationalism:
Diaspora-Homeland
Development ? 1899

fellow nationalswho have gone away and returnedsuccessful. Take,for example,the


Zimbabweannational,StriveMasiyiwa,a hugelysuccessful telecommunicationspioneer.
out of Zimbabwe.Econetwas
Masiyiwais the founderof EconetWirelessCommunications
Zimbabwe'sfirstprivatelyruntelecom concernin the country,whichbecame an overnight
success (Patterson2001).Despitethe factthatEconetwas on courseto providereliableand
affordable
telecomserviceto millionsof citizens- somethingthe government
was unableto do
- as well as attractnew investmentandtechnologyintothe countryand provideadditional
employment,the governmentkeptthe companyfrompersuingits businessandservicingthe
populationfor morethanfive years.Masiyiwa,whose wealthis estimatedto exceed $100
million,runsa telecommunications
empirethatincludessixcellularbusinessesandtwo satellite
GreatBritain,
Morocco,Nigeria,Botswana
companiesthatspana numberof countriesincluding
and New Zealand.WhereasoverseasChinesewho amass fortunesin the diasporaand are
encouragedandassisted in investinginthe futureof the homeland,Masiyiwa,who fearsfor
his life,livesinself-imposedexileintheJohannesburg
metroarea(Itano2004).
Developmentby the diasporarefersto the diasporaworkingchieflyif not exclusivelyin
helpingthe homelanddevelop.Israelprovidesan instructive
exampleof thisclass of diaspora
anddevelopment.Formanyyearsnow,Israelhas been the annualrecipientof morethan$3
billionof foreigneconomicandmilitary
aidfromthe USgovernment's
AgencyforInternational
Development(USAID).
Ostensibly,USAID'smissionis to workwithandthroughThirdWorld
to helpraisethe livingstandardsof some of
governmentsandnongovernmental
organizations
the poorestpeopleonthe planet.Israel,however,ranksas theworld's26thrichestnationoutof
200.The$3 billionannualdisbursement
to Israelmakesthe countrythe number
approximately
1 recipientof U.S.foreignaid.Thepopulation
of Israeltodayis approximately
six million.Since
1962,Israelhas receivedmoreforeignaidfromthe UnitedStatesthanallof LatinAmerica,the
Caribbean
andSub-Saharan
Africacombined(USAID
of these
2002);the combinedpopulation
threeareasis welloverone billion.
Thecomplexorganizational
structure
of privatenonprofit
and
advocacyinstitutions
workingon behalfof IsraelandJewishAmericansis verysophisticated
andextremelywell-run,
notto mentionexceedinglyeffective.Therearenumerousnoteworthy
institutions,butonlytwo of the most effectivewillbe referencedhere.One is knownas the
Presidents'Conference,comprisedof presidentsof manylargeJewishorganizations
such as
the WorldJewish Congress,B'naiBrithand the WorldJewish Committee.The Presidents'
Conference
tendsto workmorecloselywiththe executivebranchof the U.S.government,
while
the second organization,
the America-Israel
PublicAffairsCommittee(AIPAC),
works more
closely with Congress(Smith2000). The Presidents'Conferenceand AIPAChave been
deftat workingwiththe Israelisto articulate
the needs of Israelto Washington,
exceptionally
fundsto electCongressional
memberswho supportIsrael,andhelping
raisingandcontributing
defeat those who do not. WhileAfricandiasporanswill neverinfluenceU.S.publicpolicy,
transfercutting-edge
contributions
to theirhomelandson the scale
technologyormakefinancial
of JewishAmericans,
the pointis thatmoreprogresscanoccurinthese areas.
Latecomers of Development In, Through and By the Diaspora
India
Indians,byfar,havebeen the largestrecipientof H-1B visas,whicharea deviceused bythe
federalgovernmentinthe interestof "assuringthe maintenanceof a workforceat the global
TheH-1Bvisaprogramallowsforeignersto moveto the UnitedStates
competitiveforefront."
foremploymentindesignatedcriticalareasof the economy.Thecapwas set at 65,000bythe

1900 * SocialForcesVolume84, Number4 * June2006

1990 Immigration
Act;it was raisedto 115,000infiscalyear 1999andto 195,000between
fiscalyears 2000 and 2002, whereuponthe cap would revertbackto 65,000, whichit did.
and
and ElectronicEngineers(IEEE-U.S.)
Unions,the U.S.branchof the Instituteof Electrical
othersfoughtthe increasewhilemanyindustryexecutivesandtradeassociations,such as
the BusinessSoftwareAlliance(BSA),Information
TechnologyAssociationof America(ITAA)
- whichrepresentcompaniesincluding
Cisco
Associationof America(EAA)
andthe Electronic
Systems, Intel,Motorola,TexasInstrumentsand Oracle,firmsthatemployH-1Bs - wanted
stillhighernumbersof H-1Bs. Herewe havea domesticpublicpolicyfightthatis fraughtwith
some thatloomparticularly
seriousforeignimplications,
largeforthe homelandsof engaged
U.S.-baseddiasporas.Countriesthat send largenumbersof theirnationalsto the United
States on H-1B visas havetheirdevelopmentagendas boundup in this debate. Organized
withtheirrespectivehomelandstates enterintothe politicalfrayin
diasporasincollaboration
BSA
of
and their member firms. Key to the diaspora-homeland
ITAA,
EAA,
support
is to aligntheirprojectwithotherdomestic
collaborative
successes of these ethnonationals
forces(e.g.,votingblocsand/orlobbyingcampaignof iconssuch as the bluechiptech firms
citedabove)and/orcommonlyexpressedAmericaninterestsandideals.
Once more,the Indiangovernment- likethatof the SouthKorean,Chinese,Taiwanese,
Singaporeanand other countries- has taken a proactive,comprehensiveand strategic
collaborative
developmenteffort,hence braincirculation.
approachto its diaspora-homeland
Notethe observationsof MyronWeiner(1990):
TheIndiangovernmenthas made a majoreffortto reachout to the
Indiancommunityin the UnitedStatesforsupport.Ithas sought to
inducenonresidentIndians(NRIs...)to deposittheirsavingsin Indian
banks,investin Indiancompanies,andstarttheirown businessesin
India.TheIndianfinanceministerhas met withthe New York-based
Fund"to help
NRIClubof NorthAmericato discusscreatingan "India
membersinvestin India,andtherehavebeen discussionsof pressing
the IRS to permit tax-shelteredIRA accounts to be used for
investmentsin India.TheIndianEmbassyhas also encouragedthe
IndianCommunityin the UnitedStates to activelysupportIndian
(p.202)
foreignpolicyobjectivesin Washington.
Affairsof the Indiangovernmenthas establisheda SpecialHigh
TheMinistryof External
LevelCommitteeon the IndianDiaspora.Thecommitteewas createdto studythe problems,
aspirationsand attitudesof the IndianDiaspora,and to study the roles that Nonresident
Indians(NRIs)andpeopleof Indianorigincouldplayinthe economic,socialandtechnological
developmentof India(TheHindu2001).Tothisend,the Indiangovernmenthas recentlytaken
two concrete,proactivesteps: (1)ruledto allowdualcitizenshipfor NRIsand(2)established
a new ministry
forthe singularpurposeof servingthe needs andelicitingthe supportof NRIs.
These two demonstrableacts show how Indiahas fullyembracedthe strategichomelanddiasporadevelopmentmodel.
Mexico
Sharpcontrastscan be drawnbetween the aboveAsiannationsand othernationsseeking
to develop.Mexicois one of those nationsthat,untilrecently,failedto aggressivelypursuea
strategic diaspora-homelandcollaborativedevelopment agenda. State officials, nongovernmentestablishmentfiguresandthe Mexicandiasporiceliteinthe UnitedStatesfailed

Transnationalism:
Development * 1901
Diaspora-Homeland

to collaborateuntilthe late 1970s.Priorto that,Mexicansinthe homeland,fromgovernment


viewed recentmembersof
officialson downto the commonpersoninthe street, regularly
the diasporain the UnitedStates essentiallyas "sellouts."Matchingthat castigatingview,
at Mexicoforits continued
andembarrassingly
manydiasporamemberslookeddespairingly
views
on both sides hadthe
disdainful
(Jones-Correa1995-96).Mutually
impoverishment
collaborative
effectof preventinga diaspora-homeland
developmentagenda.
Therapprochement
finallyoccurredin the late 1970s.Thegovernmentbeganto rethink
withits diaspora,over98 percentof whom resideinthe UnitedStates
Mexico'srelationship
1999).Theemigrationof Mexicansto jointhe ranksof the U.S.diasporawas being
(Gutierrez
viewedby strategicthinkersas a resourcegainratherthana resourcedrain.In2002, at $9.9
billion,Mexicowas the second largestrecipientof remittancesin the developingworld
(Solimano2003).By2004, Mexicanremittances,standingat $13.2 billion,placedMexicoin
the numberone spot ahead of India(Thouez2005). Turningthe braindraininto a brain
circulation
reflectedboththe growingpoliticalcloutof Chicanosandthe successfuleffortof
MexicoCityto breathelifeintothe transnational
community.
Ph.D.in politicaleconomyandgovernment,
a Harvard
PresidentCarlosSalinasde Gortari,
was predisposedwell beforehis electionin 1988to advancethe collaborative
development
culturalaffinityforsuch an
agendamuchfurtherandfaster.PresidentSalinashadthe built-in
was his focus on the politicalutilityof the diasporato the
agenda,but even moreimportant
forthe southernpartof the country's
economiccontributions
northas wellas the indispensable
effortsto develop.Bythe timethe firstBushpresidencywas windingdown,the Mexicanstate
as
thinkerswere as eagerforthe swiftpassageof NAFTA
andleadingMexicanestablishment
the NAFTA
U.S.corporateadvocates:"During
debate,the Mexicangovernmentflew entire
themfortheir
leadersto MexicoCityforbriefings,preparing
delegationsof Mexican-American
in
U.S.
the
As
stated
earlier
roleas advocatesforNAFTA."
(Jones-Correa:
59)
paper, diasporas
seekingto successfullyinfluenceforeignpolicyto benefittheirrespectivehomelandsfavorably
attemptto unite in common cause through,at the very least, temporarymarriagesof
well-establishedgroups,and/oralignthe homelandconveniencewith domestic politically
interestsandideals.
interestedpublicpolicyagendawithmanifestlypowerfulAmerican
TheSalinasgovernmentwas as strategicas it was determinedin elicitingthe supportof
the Mexicandiasporaforthe successful passage of fast-trackauthorityfor NAFTA.
Leading
stroked.Forexample,"In1991,AntoniaHernandezof the
diasporicfigureswere continually
humanrightsprotectiongroupMALDEF
(Mexican-American
LegalDefenseand Educational
Fund)was awardedthe Orderof the AztecEagle,Mexico'shighesthonorgivento a foreign
to the advancementof Mexicoorto the betterunderstanding
citizenforhis orhercontribution
of Mexicoabroad.In 1993, an Aztec Eaglemedalwent to RaulYaguirre,presidentof the
NationalCouncilof LaRaza."(Shain1999:189)Whilethese recognitionsdo not necessarily
for supportingthe fast-trackdeal, they do illustratehow a homeland
implya quid-pro-quo
state can reachout to its diasporain the UnitedStates as partof a strategiccollaborative
developmentagenda.Moreover,MexicoCity'sinfluence,combinedwith leadingMexicanAmericanorganizationsin conjunctionwith majorU.S.manufacturing,
trucking,textileand
otherindustries,pressuredthe Congressional
HispanicCaucusso effectivelythatallbutone
of the CaucusmembersvotedforNAFTA
(Shain1999-2000).
The African Diaspora
The schism between the two groups of the Africandiasporain the United States descendantsof enslavedAfricansand newer,voluntaryimmigrants- is knottyand hitherto
largelypoliticallydebilitating,a relationshipexperiencedby no other U.S.-baseddiaspora.

1902 * SocialForcesVolume84, Number4 * June2006

Stereotypesoften preventAfricanimmigrantsand descendantsfrom pursuingcommon


ancestralhomelanddevelopmentagendas. ManyAfricanimmigrantsoften see African
Americansas too fixatedon race,unwilling
to accepttheirshortcomingsregarding
sacrifice
and hardwork,and havingsquanderedtremendousopportunities
for success inthe United
States.Conversely,
as socially
manyAfricandescendentsfrequentlysee Africanimmigrants
andculturally
of the benefitstheyenjoyas a resultof
backwards,haughty,andunappreciative
theirancestors'sacrificesinthis country(Authur
2002).
to havesome politicalcloutarethe Congressional
Threeblackinstitutions
Black
purported
andthe UrbanLeague.5Becausethe livesof largesectionsof the black
Caucus,the NAACP
communityare encumberedby issues of institutionalracism,poorlyperformingschools,
inadequateaffordablehousing,urbanviolenceandotherdomesticsocialills,the lion'sshare
of the attentionandthese institutions'
concertedcampaignshavefocused on issues within
the UnitedStates. Conversely,new Africanimmigrantstend to be organizedin mutualaid
acculturation
intothe Americansocietyto contributing
societies,whichspanfromfacilitating
to capitalformationforentrepreneurial
activitiesinthe UnitedStates and/orbackinspecific
Africancountries.Politicalorganizationsrunby and chieflyconcernedwith descendants'
domesticissues regularly
Africans,
engagethe leversof state powerwhereasnew immigrant
while significantlyconcerned about problems and prospects back in their respective
inAmerica
homelands,arefarless likelyto engagethe state or be partyto elite mobilization
aboutmattersconcerningthem.
there have been issues aroundwhich the two blackcommunitiesof the
Episodically,
Africandiasporainthe UnitedStatesunite.TheCongressional
BlackCaucusemergedin 1971
to providea platformforblacksto engage the state on the issue of puttingits mightbehind
ending white minoritydictatorshipin SouthernAfrica.RepresentativesCharlesDiggs,
cofounderof the CongressionalBlackCaucus,and RandallRobinson,founderof TransAfrica,
used the forceof theirinstitutions
inSouthernAfrica.RonWalters
to helpsupportrevolutions
rhetoricalquestionposed by MartinWeil
(1987)trenchantlycritiquedthe politically-loaded
backin 1974:"Canthe BlacksDoforAfricaWhatthe Jews DidforIsrael?"
Weilwas
However,
correctby notingthat,"Toaidthe revolution
abroad,blacksmustfirstjointhe establishment
at home."(p.86)This paper argues that some other U.S.-baseddiasporicgroups have
successfullyappliedWeil'sdictumto providetheirhomelandswitha comparative
advantage
indevelopmentagendas.
schism,a majorimpedimentforan African-American
Beyondthe descendant-immigrant
collaborative
diaspora-homeland
developmentproject,unlikesuccessfuldiaspora-homeland
projects,is thatthe Africandiasporahas lackedstrategicbackingof a majorstate orstates in
Africato generate enthusiasm,focus and resource bases for some specific homeland
development- whichhadbeen the case withSouthKoreaandChinaforfourdecadesandfor
two decades with Indiaand Mexico.These may simplybe manifestationsof the newest
historicalforms of more intense efforts to keep blacks at the bottom of the hierarchy
discussed by Golberg(2002),Feagin(2000)and Campbell(1994),amongothers.History,
of
course,is notfate;therefore,it is indeedpossibleforAfricanpeoplesto mobilizetheiragency
inthe formof strategictransnational
braincirculation
likeothertransnational
groups,though
in theirown syncretisticmannerand at the commensuratelevel to overcomethe "raceneutral"
forces presentlyconstraining
them.
politicoeconomic
Sub-Saharan Africa
Inno way does this paperimplythatAfricais completelydevoidof progresson the frontsof
or
strategicvision,specific programsand concrete practicesto enhance country-specific

Transnationalism:
Diaspora-Homeland
Development * 1903

collaborativedevelopmentagendas.Thereare clear
diasporic-homeland
continent-general
Inhis study,Apraku(1991),forone
examplesinAfricato whichone can pointforillustration.
example,has foundevidenceof Africangovernments'effortsto luretheirrespectivetechnical
withsubsidiesfor homes, cars,andprofessionalequipmentinthe
nationalsintorepatriation
homelandcountry.Nevertheless,there is a chasm between state officialsand strategic
thinkingestablishmentfiguresinAfricansocietiesincomparisonwithothercountriesprofiled
inthisstudywhen it comes to mobilizing
its U.S.-baseddiasporas.
One of the most significantrecent U.S.foreignpolicydebates towardAfricawas the
Act(AGOA).
AGOAeffectivelysplitmembersof the
proposedAfricanGrowthandOpportunity
BlackCaucus,24 ultimately
votedinsupportand12 against(Walters
2004).The
Congressional
assentingside saw it as a feeble yet importantstartof new investmentintoAfricaand new
inAmericaforAfricanexportersbeyondprimary
marketopportunities
products.Thus,theysaw
AGOAas a belatedemulationof U.S.investmentand marketopeningsdecades earlierthat
contributed
to EastAsia'sstartingout inlowlyapparelandtextileproduction
andsubsequently
going throughrapidindustrialization.
Conversely,the dissenterssaw it as destructivefor a
continent already broken economically.In short, the dissenters largely agreed with
Jessie Jackson,Jr.'scharacterization
of itwhen he saidthatthe initiative
was
Representative
so inimical
to Africaninterestsuntilit mayas wellbe labeledas the "Africa
Recolonization
Act."
Some have thoughtof AGOAas the "African
NAFTA."
However,there was inadequate
coordination
betweenAfricancapitalsorwiththe formerOrganization
forAfricanUnity(OAU)
andblackpoliticalandAfrica-focused
leadersinthe UnitedStates.Walters(2004)notes that,
althoughgroups like the Constituencyfor Africaand the AfricanDiplomaticCorps in
Washingtondidworksome withAfricanAmericanleaders,theircollectiveeffortsat issue
framingandcollaborative
agendasettingappearnotto havebeen on the levelof the Mexican
NAFTA
effort.The Mexicangovernmentregularlybroughtlarge delegationsof Mexican
Americanleadersto MexicoCityfor consultationand coordinationto both help shape the
Suchissue framingand collaborative
draftingand passage of NAFTA.
developmentagenda
settingwere not emulatedby diasporicleadersand leadersof Africanstates, commercial
enterprisesandcivilsocietyorganizations.

Conclusion
Usingthe approachof comparativeanalysis,this paperhas investigatedthe importanceof
transnationalism
as a means of advancingpeoples, whichcomes inthe formof homeland
states workingcollaboratively
withtheirrespectivediasporasinthe UnitedStatesto benefit
the homeland.Thesignificantfindingis thatwhen science andtechnologytalentednationals
froma Southerncountryemigrateto the UnitedStates,such emigrationcan be identifiedas
-a
eithera braindrain- an adverseimpacton the homeland- or a case of braincirculation
socioeconomicandtechnologygainforthe homeland.Thefactorthat most determinesthe
outcomeis the natureof collaboration
betweenthe homelandandthe U.S.-baseddiaspora.
At one end of the spectrumthere is no substantivecoordinationbetween sanctioned
institutionsandleadersof organizations
governmentofficesorquasi-government
comprised
between
chieflyof theirdiasporans.Forthatmatter,theremayeven be a hostilerelationship
the two. Atthe otherend of the spectrumis institutionalized
between
strategiccollaboration
the two sides, resultingfroma combinationof a heightenedsense of sympathy,solidarity,
obligationand profitto be made.
Thisstudylookedat homelanddevelopmentas the outcomewithstrategiccollaborative
developmentbetweendiasporicleadersandthe homelandas the operativefactor.Homeland
as technological
andsocioeconomicdevelopment(including
developmentwas conceptualized

1904 * SocialForcesVolume84, Number4 * June2006

between
attainmentandaverageincome).Strategiccollaboration
lifeexpectancy,educational
the diasporaandthe homelandwas takenas a measureof a diasporiccommunity'sfavorable
affect on the U.S. state; technologytransfer;and financialcontributions,includingboth
remittancesandinvestments.
UnlikeIsrael,China,Indiaand South Korea,Mexico had to overcome the mutually
inthe late 1970s,
disparagingsentimentsbetweenthe two sides. Sincethe rapprochement
debate,andis
progressstartedslowly,then pickedupsteam duringthe periodof the NAFTA
now gainingmoregroundaroundissues of permanentresidency,amnestyandguest-worker
diaspora-homeland
programs.Africannations are furtherbehind in institutionalizing
collaborativedevelopmentagendas. In the past few decades, Africandiasporasand
homelandshaveworkedonlyepisodicallyto promotedevelopmentin the latter,but,again,
such collaborativedevelopment agendas in Sub-SaharanAfrica have never been
as in othernations.The challengeto institutionalizing
institutionalized
diaspora-homeland
collaborativedevelopmentis exponentiallymore difficultbecause of the multiplestates
involvedand the fact that Sub-SaharanAfricancountries would be attemptingthis
inthe early21stcenturyratherthaninthe mid-to late-20th
institutionalization
centurywhenthe
historical
momentperhaps
collaborative
and
a
states
launched
their
campaigns
single-case
moreamenableto such developmentstrategiesexisted.
Notes
see Schillerand Basch(1995);Schiller,Baschand
1. Fordiscussionson transnationalism,
Blanc-Szanton
1992;Portes1999;Kivisto2001.
2. Homingin on the nature of Africancoordinationof its diasporizedand domestic
homeland-basedpeoples aroundtechnologicaldevelopmentis not to ignorethe AIDS
pandemic,cripplingilliteracy,
grindingpoverty,rampantcorruptionand othersocial ills
across the continent.At the same time, solving those ills without promotingand
of technically-oriented
diasporizedand homeland-based
strengtheningthe collaboration
Africanswillalso likelyconfoundsocialandeconomicdevelopment.Inotherwords,this
overotherchallenges.
collaboration
paperin no way privilegesthe diaspora-homeland
Instead,this papermerelyseeks to drawattentionto andconceptuallyclarifyone huge
thatis typicallyignoredor glossed overin development
challengeas wellas opportunity
scholarship. China, Israel, South Korea and India have witnessed considerable
developmentin the past few decades; eliminatethe U.S.-baseddiaspora-homeland
collaborativedevelopment agenda and their socioeconomic and technological
developmentwouldhavebeen stymiedorworse.
3. Diaspora-homeland
developmentin the case of Israelhas been and continuesto be
uniquelycrucialto its security and sheer survival,not just to socioeconomic and
technologicaldevelopment.WithoutU.S.directandindirectsupportof economic,military
and intelligenceassistanceto Israeloverits 54-yearhistory,the nationwouldhavelong
effortsand economic
ceased to exist.Withoutthe diasporiccommunity'smobilization
to
successes, U.S.state supportandAmericanwealthwouldnot havebeenforthcoming
Israel.Moreover,no otherdiasporiccommunityin the UnitedStates is likelyto emulate
this success due in partto JewishAmericans'unrivaledbreadthand depthof influence
in positionsof powerinAmericansociety,relativeto ThirdWorlddiasporas.Nonetheless,
Jewishmodelprovidesinsightregarding
the non-emulative
projects
possiblecollaborative
forothertransnational
groups.

Transnationalism:
Development * 1905
Diaspora-Homeland
4. China,of course, also regularlysurveils and in some cases detains some ethnic Chinese,
especially those from the United States, for fear of seditious activity.Nevertheless, such
fear may be more prevalentwith Africangovernments.
5. Thereare reallimitsto this so-called politicalclout by blackpoliticalorganizationsinthe United
States. One evident illustrationof this limitationis PresidentBush's refusalto meet with the
CongressionalBlackCaucusand to address the annualmeeting of the NAACPinthe past five
years. A president's failureto providesuch an audience and address Jewish politicaland
advocacy leaders is almost unthinkable.While meetings can be construed as merely
symbolic, these meetings are nonetheless reflectionsof the gravityof the seriousness with
which issues and concerns of ethno-nationalgroups are taken by the government.

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