Thursday, December 22, 2011

Session on Scientific Diasporas at the AAAS Annual Meeting, 2012

Coordinating, Learning, and Sharing Best Practices Among Scientific Diaspora Networks

Saturday, February 18, 2012: 10:00 AM-11:30 AM
Room 121 (VCC West Building)
Vancouver, Canada

The large-scale emigration of scientifically trained individuals to other countries while seeking better opportunities is often referred to as brain drain. However, this negative connotation obscures the great untapped potential that these diaspora science networks hold as viable and ongoing resources for their countries of origin. Although there are many efforts among scientific diaspora communities to engage productively with their homelands to improve the scientific capacities of these countries, there has been to date very little in coordination of efforts, in relating best practices in these engagements, or in highlighting what works and what does not. This panel aims to catalyze a conversation about how best to leverage existing efforts among disparate scientific and technical diaspora networks, to highlight models for engagement, and to foster greater communications between different diaspora networks that have much to learn from each other, as well as with governmental and nongovernmental bodies that aim to strengthen the role of diasporas in capacity-building in their countries of origin.


Marcelo Vinces, AAAS S&T Policy Fellow, NSF
Pallavi Phartiyal, Union of Concerned Scientists


Dr. Nicholas P. Farrell, Virginia Commonwealth University
Wild Geese Network of Irish Scientists: The First Year

Dr. Wael Al-Delaimy, University of California, San Diego
The Arab Spring: A Sunny Forecast for the Diaspora Scientists

Caribbean Diaspora for Science, Technology and Innovation: Driver of the Caribbean Science Foundation

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The magic of diasporas

A recent article in The Economist:

Immigrant networks are a rare bright spark in the world economy. Rich countries should welcome them.

"fears that poor countries will suffer as a result of a “brain drain” are overblown. The prospect of working abroad spurs more people to acquire valuable skills, and not all subsequently emigrate. Skilled migrants send money home, and they often return to set up new businesses. One study found that unless they lose more than 20% of their university graduates, the brain drain makes poor countries richer."

A Bicontinental Biologist's Project: How to Rejuvenate Russian Science

From The Chronicle of Higher Education, a story of a scientist in the Russian diaspora, and how he used connections in both countries to improve Russian science, and some of the hurdles he encountered.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Welcome to Scientific Diasporas

Welcome to the Scientific Diasporas blog, a source of news, resources and information for self-organized communities of expatriate scientists and engineers working to develop their home country or region, in science, technology, and education.

Scientific diasporas constitute an important resource for countries of origin. We hope to offer a platform for sharing ideas and raising the profile of S&T diaspora networks that often work in isolation. This website aims to increase collaboration and sharing of best practices among diverse communities and forms of engagement.

For the first post here, we offer a policy article published in Science magazine in 2006 that nicely articulates the promise of scientific diasporas, and what can be done to optimize their activities.

Scientific Diasporas
by Béatrice Séguin, Peter A. Singer and Abdallah S. Daar.
Science 16 June 2006

Source: & Science magazine