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Scientific diasporas as development partners

Skilled migrants from Colombia, India and South Africa in Switzerland: empirical evidence and policy responses- Preface by Jean-Baptiste Meyer

Edited By Gabriela Tejada Guerrero and Jean-Claude Bolay

Over the last two decades, globalisation has accelerated international migration flows, particularly of skilled labour. Yet increasing migration by skilled workers from developing countries («brain drain») has raised serious concerns internationally about the adverse development impact on their countries of origin. This book, however, highlights the positive aspects of skilled labour migration as scientific diasporas are playing a growing role in the transfer of technology, skills and knowledge («brain gain») to their home countries. This is a very significant development in a globalised world where science, technology and knowledge can trigger economic and social transformations. The book presents solid empirical evidence of the contributions scientific diasporas make to their countries of origin, based on primary surveys of skilled migrants from Colombia, India and South Africa employed in Switzerland, a major destination country. The findings lead to a better understanding of the motives for migration, the profile of the scientific diaspora communities in Switzerland, and the varied ways in which they help their home countries. The book makes a significant contribution to the international policy debate and dialogue on migration and development. In particular, it shows how to leverage the potential of scientific diasporas as agents of home country development, by identifying good practices and offering specific recommendations for the countries of origin and of destination.


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Information about the Authors XIX


About the Authors JEAN-CLAUDE BOLAY is Director of Cooperation@epfl at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL) and a Professor at the ENAC School. He holds a PhD in Political Science and is a specialist in urban issues in Latin America, Asia and West Africa. He has been a scientific advisor to the Swiss State Secretariat for Education and Research and he has also di- rected postgraduate courses on development in Africa and India. He has a vast experience of North-South scientific development cooperation and has been a member of the executive and advisory boards of several institutions includ- ing NCCR North-South, EADI, KFPE, and the Swiss Centre for Scientific Research in Abidjan. MARIE CLAIRE CALOZ-TSCHOPP is Professor of Political Theory at the Insti- tute of Political and International Studies (IEPI) of the University of Lausanne (UNIL). In her work she has addressed the issues of populations in movement, “stateless”, refugees, displaced persons and the groupings into which they de- velop. In addition to the questions raised by European and international migra- tion, she has worked on contemporary political philosophy (especially Hannah Arendt, Cornelius Castoriadis, Étienne Balibar, Rada Ivekovic) and with re- searchers on the sociology of migration (Abdelmalek Sayad), racism, and sex- ism (Colette Guillaumin). She holds a doctorate in Political Science and com- pleted an habilitation in philosophy on topics linked to the phenomenon of populations in movement. IBRAHIMA AMADOU DIA is a Researcher at the Department of Sociology at the University of Geneva (UNIGE)...

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