PROVINCIAL GLOBALISATION: THE IMPACT OF REVERSE TRANSNATIONAL FLOWS IN INDIA'S REGIONAL TOWNS
A collaborative international research programme of the:
Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR),
University of Amsterdam, and the National Institute of Advanced Studies (NIAS),
Bangalore, India, funded by the Integrated Programme of WOTRO Science
for Global Development, the Netherlands.
Prof. Mario Rutten (AISSR)
Prof. Carol Upadhya (NIAS)
Dr. Puja Guha (NIAS)
Dr. Leah M Koskimaki (NIAS)
Ms. Sanam Roohi (NIAS)
Ms. Sanderien Verstappen (AISSR)
Ms. Sulagna Mustafi (NIAS)
International migration from India has produced important diasporic communities in different countries, leading to the formation of transnational networks. Transnational linkages between migrants and their home regions or towns are often conduits through which a range of economic, social and cultural resources are transmitted back to India. Such ‘reverse’ transnational flows have become significant drivers of globalisation and socio-economic transformation throughout the global South, with both positive and negative impacts on development.
This five-year research programme, initiated in January 2010, is designed to explore processes of ‘provincial globalisation’ in India by tracing the transnational flows of resources transmitted by migrants to their home regions. The studies will document a broad range of ‘reverse flows’ -- economic resources such as household remittances, investments in land or businesses, and financial support for NGOs; ‘social remittances’ such as flows of ideas and know-how; and cultural and religious transactions such a donations to temples. The objective is to examine the influence of these ‘reverse flows’ on political and economic processes and cultural identities in the selected regions, focusing on key towns and their rural hinterlands, in order to investigate the impact of regional diasporas on social development from the ‘bottom-up’.
In order to take into account the great diversity in regional economies, societies and histories, the programme will compare the operation and effects of these networks and transactions across three different regions of India – central Gujarat, coastal Andhra Pradesh and coastal Karnataka. Within each region the focus of research will be on the key provincial towns and their rural hinterlands. By mapping comparatively the key transnational networks, mechanisms and sites for resource transmission by migrants, the constituent research projects will examine comparatively the influence of such transfers on political and economic processes, social development, and cultural/religious institutions and identities in the selected regions.
The programme consists of five independent research projects – three doctoral projects and two post-doctoral - and includes both Dutch and Indian researchers. The Ph.D. projects will be intensive micro-level studies carried out in three different regions -- central Gujarat, coastal Andhra Pradesh and coastal Karnataka -- which have diverse histories of international migration. The two post-doc projects will be macro-level studies of the geography and economics of transnational linkages and flows at the regional, state and national levels.