Global Diaspora Forum 2012: Moving Forward By Giving Back



Overview

The Global Diaspora Forum is an annual celebration of America’s diaspora communities. The gathering challenged diaspora communities to forge partnerships with the private sector, civil society, and public institutions in order to make their engagements with their countries of origin or ancestry effective, scalable, and sustainable.

The event brought together a diverse range of stakeholders, all passionate about promoting diaspora engagement, including:

    • Leaders of diaspora communities
    •  U.S. government officials
    • Private sector stakeholders
    • Representatives of international institutions
    • Foundations executives
    • Academic experts
    • Members of nonprofit organizations
The theme for the 2012 Global Diaspora Forum held in Washington, DC on July 25-26 was “Moving Forward by Giving Back.” The Forum focused on how new technology can empower and increase diaspora philanthropy, social entrepreneurship, volunteerism, and social innovation. Please click here to download short bios on each of the event’s plenary speakers or to listen to podcasts of selected panels.

Event Report

On July 25-26, 2012, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton convened the second-annual Global Diaspora Forum at the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Agency for International Development in Washington, D.C. Building on the success of the inaugural Forum in May 2011, this gathering underscored the importance of partnering with diaspora communities on development and diplomacy initiatives and encouraged participants to connect with one another, build global networks, and discuss opportunities for giving back to their countries of origin.

Diaspora leaders from around the globe joined the gathering representing a diverse group of stakeholders:  23 percent came from diaspora organizations, 39 percent from non-profits, 18 percent from private sector, and 11 percent from government. Of the more than 450 participants that attended the event, approximately 26 percent represented countries in Africa, 19 percent from Europe, 13 percent from Asia, 12 percent from Latin America, 11 percent from the Caribbean, and 11 percent from the Middle East.

The Forum kicked-off with an overview of accomplishments of the International diaspora Engagement Alliance (IdEA), a partnership platform launched by the Secretary of State in 2011. Today, IdEA has over 1,500 diaspora community partners and has launched three regional entrepreneurship competitions including the second African Diaspora Marketplace, the Caribbean Idea Marketplace, and the Latin American Idea (La Idea) competition. Building on these successes, the Secretary announced new commitments around this partnership.

They included the official opening of the La Idea business competition which will support small and medium sized entrepreneurs from Mexico and Central America. She also announced other new partnerships for promoting diaspora engagement, including a mentoring platform, a grassroots philanthropy program, a diaspora fellowship program, and a diaspora volunteer corps.

Another major feature of the 2012 Forum was the new DIASPORAS@ program. Through this new initiative, diaspora community leaders were invited to host local parties to watch livestreamed sessions from the main Forum at the State Department and host discussion groups around topics of interest. Diaspora groups in Minneapolis, Kansas City, and Lynn, Massachusetts coordinated viewing parties and participated in online discussions about diaspora engagement. In addition, over 655 participants joined the convening online, representing groups from the United States, India, Malaysia, Pakistan, Canada, Egypt, China, Philippines, Nigeria, Sudan, and Saudi Arabia, among others.

Key Themes

Secretary Clinton opened the 2012 Global Diaspora Forum by stressing the enormous potential that diaspora communities have to promote development in countries of heritage and calling for greater engagement. Over the course of the two-day conference, participants shared ideas about how government and diaspora communities could work together more effectively. Key themes from the conference focused on the best ways to tap this diaspora potential and implement specific diaspora engagement strategies. Many of these discussions addressed the need to create diaspora-led initiatives that not only successfully target a critical challenge, but that are scalable, efficient, and effective enough to create a sustainable solution to the problem. Over the course of the Forum, participants discussed a variety of successful and unsuccessful initiatives, as well as the challenges they faced and the best practices they discovered for building diaspora-led partnerships. Below is a summary of the most important themes that emerged from these discussions:

1.      Partnerships with diaspora is critical to more effective foreign policy

As access to technology expands and the world shrinks, diplomacy and development is increasingly becoming more inclusive. Foreign policy is no longer the sole domain of the diplomatic corps; rather we see diaspora community organizations and members play an important role in promoting stronger, deeper, more effective bilateral collaboration with their countries of heritage. Partnerships that build on existing linkages to nations of origin and draw on the talents, creativity, resources, and networks of diaspora communities are a vital part of the foreign policy process.

2.      Diaspora communities are a “diplomatic bridge” during times of  transition

Diaspora communities can serve as a “diplomatic bridge,” helping to reaffirm and strengthen diplomatic ties amid political upheaval and change. For example, in the aftermath of the revolution in Tunisia, Tunisian-Americans played an important role in helping to reopen economic ties between the U.S. and Tunisia. Egyptian-Americans also continue to play an important role following the political transition from a dictatorship. Meanwhile, the advice and support of Syrian-Americans was cited by Secretary Clinton as enhancing diplomatic efforts in that country through its current crisis.

3.      Leveraging the diversity of the United States as an asset

More than 60 million Americans are first- or second-generation diaspora members. These individuals bring diversity to the American tableau and are an important engine for growth and innovation across every industry and sector. As Secretary Clinton remarked in her keynote address, “…the United States has always benefited from the influx of talent and dynamism that diasporas of all kinds bring to our shores.” By recognizing this and opening our doors to talented immigrants from around the world, these communities help to build lasting relationships with the foreign countries from which they came and bring new ideas to America, mutually benefitting everyone involved.

Plenary session panelists from the “Innovations for Giving Back” panel on the first day agreed that the diversity of our diaspora communities can be an especially important asset if we engage young diaspora members. By encouraging young and ambitious diaspora members to embrace their heritage, we can greatly benefit from their energy, resources and skills.

4.      Remittances are important but only part of the picture

Remittances to the developing world, perhaps the most widely recognized form of diaspora engagement, have grown dramatically in recent years and are expected to continue to rise. According to the Hudson Institute, remittances from the United States alone to developing countries in 2010 were $95.8 billion, three times what the U.S. government spent on official development assistance. There is no doubt that maximizing and channeling the large amount of remittance flows from the United States into developing countries is a very important goal. Remittances have a large and immediate impact on those nations receiving the inflow of capital, representing a significant share of many countries’ gross domestic product. Additionally, new mobile banking technology combined with increased mobile phone penetration in developing countries is making a big impact on the facility of the remittance process.

However, when it comes to promoting sustainable development in emerging economies, remittances alone will not suffice. Receiving households tend to use these to money transfers tend to fill immediate expenses, including food purchases and healthcare expenditures, yet there is great potential to scale up remittances’ impact from the household to the country level. Diaspora communities’ generosity and their passion for their countries of heritage will undoubtedly be the among the key ingredients to promoting positive, long-term, and lasting change in some of the world’s most vulnerable countries and regions. Through public-private partnerships, diaspora communities can strategically invest in their countries of heritage, supporting innovative projects that are scalable and sustainable and greatly improve quality of life.

5.      Diaspora engagement is key for exploring new markets

Diaspora communities are important catalysts when it comes to exploring new markets due to their expertise of the local economy and culture, as well as their tolerance for risk-taking. In her remarks, Mimi Alemayehou, a top executive of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), explained that diasporans are quickly becoming her agency’s most important clients. With a strong understanding of the risk assessment profile of their countries of heritage and a deep commitment to seeing these places flourish, diaspora investors tend to have a longer-term outlook than the average investor. These interactions bolster U.S. exports while helping civil society groups from around the world improve regulatory systems in their home countries to foster growth. Companies are turning to their diaspora member employees to identify new market opportunities and understand the cultural preferences of their diaspora communities and countries of heritage.

6.      Diasporas drive innovation in Silicon Valley and beyond

More than half of the CEOs of Silicon Valley were born outside of the United States, demonstrating the enormous amount of talent and entrepreneurial energy that immigrants bring to the technology and engineering sectors. It is important that successful entrepreneurs establish an accessible mentoring program to aspiring diaspora entrepreneurs around the world. New technologies will allow developing economies to close the income gap quicker. By maintaining the culture of mentoring and sharing that helped build Silicon Valley, we can keep innovating and sharing the benefits of growth, both here and abroad, in the countries of heritage of our diaspora communities.

7.      Diaspora mobilization can save lives

The work of an organized, mobilized diaspora to raise awareness and money in a time of crisis and coordinate relief efforts can save tens of thousands of lives. The American Refugee Committee (ARC) proved this during the famine and malnutrition crisis in Somalia in June 2011. The primary message from the ARC was that often times diaspora communities need help simply realizing their own agency to affect change. Once unified around a goal and a desire to make a difference, the effects of their efforts can be dramatic, even when addressing a crisis thousands of miles away. The Somali diaspora in the U.S. likely helped saved tens of thousands of lives through the ARC’s “I am a Star” campaign, providing a platform for everyday diasporans (as well as all other Americans) to contribute in whatever creative and productive way that they could.

Key Announcements

La Idea

The Latin American IdEA Partnership (La Idea) is a business competition platform that fosters collaboration between entrepreneurs in the United States and Latin America with the goal of expanding innovative businesses that will generate employment and economic growth throughout the Americas.  La Idea winners will receive working capital grants to support their businesses.  La Idea partners will also provide participants with tailored business counseling and mentorship and access to financing. Latin America’s increasing affluence represents a unique opportunity for Hispanic entrepreneurs in the United States.  Latin America is a region with fast-growing economies and a rapidly expanding middle class. The Hispanic community in the United States numbers at least 50 million and includes highly skilled and educated entrepreneurs who can serve as an important engine of growth and development in the United States and Latin America. La Idea will begin accepting applications starting in summer 2012. Proposals will be evaluated based on their project strategy, development impact, sustainability, scalability, and resource leveraging capability. www.laidea.us

MentorCloud

IdEA is partnering with MentorCloud, an online, peer-to-peer e-mentorship and knowledge-sharing platform. This partnership provides diaspora organizations a powerful means for their members and partners across regions and countries to exchange ideas and expertise. It also allows them to collaborate with each other to promote human resource development and entrepreneurship, in their U.S. communities, and in their countries of origin or heritage. MentorCloud features a secure, online portal where diaspora members can share their professional expertise and success stories, establish mentor/mentee/peer relationships, participate in roundtable discussions and forums, and access personalized content on topics related to social and economic development, by countries and regions of interest. The IdEA e-mentoring platform, powered by MentorCloud, is currently active and is available to all diaspora organizations that become members of IdEA. Diaspora organizations have already, with their members creating profiles and starting to engage with each other. www.mentorcloud.com

GlobalGiving

IdEA is partnering with GlobalGiving to link diaspora communities to an innovative online platform for giving back to their countries of origin or heritage. GlobalGiving works with over 1,100 organizations in 120 countries. At the 2012 Global Diaspora Forum, IdEA and GlobalGiving invited diaspora organizations to the Global Open Challenge. The Challenge is an opportunity for organizations to develop online fundraising strategies, and to expand their networks. During the Global Open Challenge, organizations can earn a long-term position on the GlobalGiving site by raising funds for their own projects. GlobalGiving gave Forum participants a headstart on the Challenge by handing out $10 GlobalGiving gift cards for them to support the diaspora-led project of their choice. www.globalgiving.org/IdEA

 DiasporaCorps

USAID, Accenture LLP, and Cuso International announced the launch of the Diasporas for Development (DfD) initiative as a new Global Development Alliance to support and encourage diaspora volunteerism under the auspices of the IdEA Fellows Program. DfD is the first link in IdEA’s plan to establish an online Diaspora Volunteering Marketplace. IdEA will seek to provide a platform for connecting diaspora members with volunteer opportunities in their countries of heritage. Interested diaspora members will be able to use this platform to find projects that not only match their length of service and financial needs but also leverage their unique skill sets. www.cusointernational.org

Recommendations Going Forward

At the 2012 Global Diaspora Forum, participants were optimistic about the diaspora-driven initiatives already in place and motivated to do more. IdEA is the main mechanism for engagement between the U.S. government and diaspora community organizations and members. In its first year, IdEA has grown exponentially but now it is time to bring this exciting initiative to scale.

Over the next year, IdEA partners are going to interject even more energy into building the online community to ensure diasporans have an opportunity to connect and create partnerships that promote innovation, social entrepreneurship, philanthropy, volunteerism, and stronger diplomatic relations. Building on this technology and the new partnerships with MentorCloud and GlobalGiving, IdEA will continue to identify new areas for investment and collaboration in the coming year. We urge you to join the online community at www.diasporaalliance.org to stay in touch and learn more about how diaspora can become involved in the foreign policy process.

We will also build this partnership by expanding resources invested in regional business competitions. The State Department and USAID are currently working with bureaus from around the globe to launch new business competitions for small and medium size entrepreneurs and to incentivize risk-taking and innovation on a higher level. In the coming year, we expect to announce at least two more regional business competitions in addition to the recently launched La Idea and CIM marketplaces.

The problems of the 21st century are simply too big and complex for anyone government or entity to solve on its own. That is why IdEA supports the kind of collaborative efforts necessary to solve these big global issues. By getting engaged through IdEA, everyone can contribute to the worthy goal of empowering diaspora communities to achieve sustainable development around the world. The U.S. government’s work with diaspora communities has already become an essential pillar of foreign policy, but this only means that efforts of the IdEA partnership are all the more important.  As Secretary Clinton remarked, “…we have to send a clear, unmistakable call to action to people everywhere. They really can have a better life; they really can see their children do better than they have done; they really can live in peace, one with the other.”

Click here to download the full event report.


Conference Agenda

DAY 1 – Wednesday, July 25th
 U.S. Department of State
9:00 am
I. Registration & Coffee

Location: C Street Lobby

Registration begins at 8:30am

9:30 am
II. Welcoming Remarks

Location: Loy Henderson Auditorium

Kris M. Balderston, Special Representative for Global Partnerships, U.S. Department of State

10:00 am
III. Year in Review

Location: Loy Henderson Auditorium

Highlighting IdEA’s Initiatives

10:30 am
IV. Innovative Diaspora Engagement – Keynote Address

Location: Loy Henderson Auditorium

Hillary R. Clinton, U.S. Secretary of State

11:00 am
V. IdEA: Forward

Location: Loy Henderson Auditorium

Speakers:

12:00 pm
Networking Lunch

Location: Delegates Lounge 

1:00 pm
VI. Public Diplomacy through Diasporas

Location: Loy Henderson Auditorium

Tara Sonenshine, Under Secretary of Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, U.S. Department of State

1:15 pm
VII. Plenary Panel – Innovations for Giving Back

Location: Loy Henderson Auditorium

Moderator:

    • Kathleen Newland, Migration Policy Institute

Speakers:

2:45 pm
Coffee Break & Networking

Location: Delegates Lounge 

3:00 pm
VIII. Breakout Sessions
Group A. Social Entrepreneurship: Diaspora Change Makers

Location: Breakout Room 1107

Diaspora communities are at the forefront of innovative problem-solving and are the most willing to take risks to empower and improve their country of origin. Join us as we discuss how diaspora-driven social entrepreneurship can be used to foster sustainable development in countries of origin.

Moderator:

    • Roopal Shah, IndiCorps

Speakers:

      • Anousheh Ansari, Prodea Systems
      • Iman Bibars, Ashoka
      • Cheryl Dorsey, Echoing Green
      • Fawzia Naqvi, Soros Economic Development Fund

Social Entrepreneurship: Diaspora Change Makers by IdEApods

Group B. Diaspora Apps: The Next Generation of Engagement

Location: Breakout Room 1205People are beginning to learn that a cause they are passionate about is likely shared by others as well. Join us as we discuss new ways to foster greater impact by pooling resources and knowledge to create sustainable partnerships that enable larger groups of people to contribute what they can to make a difference and increase diaspora philanthropy.

Moderator:

    • Noosheen Hashemi, The Hand Foundation

Speakers:

Diaspora Apps: The Next Generation of Engagement by IdEApods

Group C. Diaspora Volunteerism: Serving Your Heritage

Location: Breakout Room 1207

Over 60 million first and second generation Americans have strong roots in their countries of origin and want to know what they can do to help. Diasporas can provide technical advice and professional expertise, often have the linguistic and cultural familiarity that makes engagement more effective and trustworthy from the recipient’s vantage point, particularly in the most volatile regions, and diaspora volunteers can help counter the effects of “brain drain”. This session will explore different ways that organized volunteer programs can engage diaspora volunteers and provide perspective from diaspora volunteers who have undertaken projects in their countries of origin.

Moderator:

Speakers:

Diaspora Volunteerism: Serving Your Heritage by IdEApods

Group D. Mobile Money: Implications for Engagement

Location: Breakout Room 1406

The role of remittances is a backbone within diaspora communities and, to many developing economies, a backbone of the economy. Mobile technology and mobile money have the potential to lower costs and expand the ability of communities to transfer funds, support the growth of businesses and the thriving entrepreneurial spirit in their respective diaspora. This session will explore the growing number of services available to those interested in remitting funds through mobile technologies and the resulting business opportunities from these new payment methods.

Moderator:

    • Nandini Harihareswara, Mobile Solutions, U.S. Agency for International Development

Speakers:

      • Bill Barhydt, Boom Financial
      • Conan French, Open Revolution
      • John Owens, Chemonics
      • Barbara Span, Western Union

Mobile Money: Implications for Engagement by IdEApods

Group E. Startup Diaspora: Unleashing A Transnational Ecosystem

Location: Breakout Room 1105

With so many new jobs in entrepreneurial economies coming from startups (firms less than five years old), it is not surprising that leaders around the world are looking to reinvigorate their economies by focusing on ways to stimulate startups. Diaspora entrepreneurs can play a pivot role in cultivating the innovation and startup ecosystems of their countries of origin.  

Moderator:

    • Thomas Debass, Global Partnership Initiative, U.S. Department of State

Speakers:

      • Claire Lee, Microsoft
      • Dilawar Syed, Yonja Media Group
      • Driss Temsamani, Maghreb Growth Foundation
      • Oltac Unsal, The World Bank Group

Start-Up Diaspora: Unleashing a Transnational Ecosystem by IdEApods

4:30 pm
IX. Closing Plenary

Location: Loy Henderson Auditorium

Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Advisor to the President for Strategic Communications

5:00 pm
X. Adjournment
6:00 pm
Science and Technology Diaspora Networking Reception

This two-hour networking reception will convene conference participants who are interested in networking, discussion, collaboration, and conversation on issues facing diaspora knowledge networks. Hors d’oeuvres will be served at this reception

Remarks by Bill Burns, Deputy Secretary of State, and Tara Sonenshine, Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs

Location: National Academy of Sciences, 2100 C Street, NW, Washington, DC

Please RSVP to Osmaan Minhas at minhaso@state.gov.


DAY 2 – Thursday, July 26th
Atrium Ballroom, Ronald Reagan Building, USAID
9:00 am
I. Registration & Coffee 

Location: Atrium Ballroom

Check in begins at 8:30am

9:15 am
II. Opening Remarks

Location: Atrium Ballroom

Maura O’Neill, Chief Innovation Officer, U.S. Agency for International Development

9:30 am
III. Diaspora Engagement in Practice – Keynote Address

Location: Atrium Ballroom

Dr. Rajiv Shah, Administrator, U.S. Agency for International Development

10:00 am
IV. Diaspora

Mimi Alemayehou, Executive Vice President, Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC)

10:30 am
Coffee Break & Networking

Location: Atrium Ballroom

11:00 am
IV. Breakout Sessions 
Group A. Partnership Opportunities with Public Institutions

Location: Atrium Ballroom Breakout Room 1

Building new programs and increasing your reach is difficult without proper funding. Join experts as they delve into new funding sources and explain how to apply for grants, undertake public-private partnerships, and share best practices for financing your diaspora community’s initiatives.

Moderator:

    • Deena Shakir, International diaspora Engagement Alliance (IdEA)

Speakers:

      • Romi Bhatia, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)
      • Jeff Brown, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)
      • Aaron Sherinian, United Nations Foundation
      • James Thompson, Global Partnership Initiative, U.S. Department of State

Partnership Opportunities with Public Institutions by IdEApods

Group B. Innovations to Affect Change

Location: Atrium Ballroom Breakout Room 2

This panel will provide best practices in giving the diaspora a voice through online platforms and social media. The panelists will also describe ways that their organizations work to raise awareness about issues of interest to the diaspora and educate individuals on how they can contribute in a way that will be meaningful both for the diaspora community and their country of heritage.

Moderator:

    • Raul Hinogosa-Ojeda, North American Integration and Development Center at the University of California

Speakers:

Innovations to Affect Change by IdEApods

Group C. Enhancing Trade, Commerce, and Development

Location: Trade Information Center, Mezzanine Level, Conference Room A

This session will focus on how the US government agencies support U.S. small and medium businesses interested in tapping into international markets. Representatives from various agencies will discuss how partnerships with the diaspora community can lead to trade and development opportunities.

Moderator:

    • Steve Glickman, White House

Speakers:

    • Antwaun Griffin, International Trade Administration
    • Alejandra Y. Castillo, U.S. Department of Commerce
    • Dario Gomez, U.S. Small Business Administration
    • Steve Gardner, U.S. Department of Commerce
12:30 pm
V. Keynote Lunch 

Location: Atrium Ballroom

Introduction:

    • Ricardo Michel, Deputy Director, Office of Innovation and Development Alliances, U.S. Agency for International Development

Donald Steinberg, Deputy Administrator, U.S. Agency for International Development

Keynote Address:

2:00 pm
Break
2:15 pm
VI. Opening of Unconference

Location: Atrium Ballroom

Chris Jurgens, Division Chief, Office of Innovation and Development Alliances, USAID

2:30 pm
VII. Unconference

Location: Atrium Ballroom

Various small roundtable discussions around topics relevant to diaspora engagement. Participants are also encouraged to attend scheduled events and sessions with our partners.

Other Unconference Events
2:30 pm
Science Diaspora Conference

This event will highlight the contribution of science diasporas to economic growth in the United States and to the development of their ancestral countries of origin through research, innovation and education.

2:30 pm
Fundraising through the Global Giving Platform

This session will allow GDF participants to speak directly with GlobalGiving on how to utilize their platform to increase visibility for diaspora organizations and fundraise.

2:30 pm
Social Entrepreneurship and the Chinese Diaspora

Convened by Tea Leaf Nation, this session will feature several speakers from the Chinese diaspora who will share their experiences on being entrepreneurs in China.

3:30 pm
Pathways Forward for Southeast Europe

Roundtable discussion hosted by the Southeast Europe Coalition and the Heritage Foundation. This session will be attended by State Department officials, ambassador/embassy personnel, Hill staff, and diaspora representatives.

Location: The Heritage Foundation, 227 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, Haller Room, 2nd Floor, Washington, DC

Please RSVP to Ana Donevska at adonevska@umdiaspora.org or 202-350-9798.

Receptions*

*These receptions are independently organized events hosted by the organizations listed below.

5:00 pm
Southeast Europe, Wines of the Region Reception

The Heritage Foundation and the United Macedonian Diaspora will co-host a reception celebrating the one-year anniversary of the Southeast Europe Coalition, which was formed during the Global Diaspora Forum in May 2011. The reception will feature wines from Southeast Europe.

Location: The Heritage Foundation, 227 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, Grewcock Room, 2nd Floor, Washington, DC

Please RSVP to Ana Donevska at adonevska@umdiaspora.org or 202-350-9798.

6:00 pm
VEGA 2012 Diaspora Volunteer Service Awards Reception

VEGA is commencing the Diaspora Volunteer Service Awards as a way to recognize the incredible work that is being done by diaspora volunteers around the world, and to host a networking reception that will help facilitate collaboration between diaspora communities and volunteer-sending organizations.

Location: CDC Development Solutions, 1030 15th Street NW, Suite #730 East, Washington, DC

Please RSVP in advance.

6:00 pm
Latin America and Caribbean Reception

A reception co-hosted by the U.S.-Mexico Foundation and the Woodrow Wilson Center honoring Latin American and Caribbean diaspora community leaders.

Location: Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, 1300 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, 6th Floor Dining Room, Washington, DC

Please RSVP in advance.

7:30 pm
Roundtable Discussion on the Role of the Diaspora Community in Protecting Religious Minorities’ Rights in Muslim-Majority Communities*

The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) plans to hold a roundtable discussion and iftar dinner on the role of the diaspora community in protecting religious minorities’ rights in Muslim-majority communities.  A roundtable discussion will begin at approximately 7:30 pm, followed by an iftar dinner at approximately 8:30 pm.

Location: The home of Dr. Maqsood and Nadira Chaudhry, 855 Dolly Madison Blvd, McLean, VA 22101

Please RSVPs to Maggie Siddiqi at maggie@isna.net.

*This event is independently run and organized.


To unleash the transformational potential of diaspora communities and broaden dialogue beyond the Global Diaspora Forum in Washington, DC, the U.S. Department of State’s Global Partnership Initiative (GPI) is launching DIASPORAS@, a platform to explore the role of diaspora communities in the development of their countries of origin/ancestry and also to inspire and challenge diaspora communities to scale and deepen their engagements. The trans-national, cross-generational program will focus on how diasporas organize, engage and collaborate. Diaspora speakers from around the globe will share their engagements and experiences.

Our new DIASPORAS@ program is designed to give communities and organizations the opportunity to stimulate dialogue through GDF-like experiences at the local level. DIASPORAS@ events are fully planned and coordinated independently on a community-by-community basis.

On July 25, 2012, hundreds of diaspora members and leaders convened in their local cities to view the Secretary’s GDF address together and begin dialogues on how to best deepen their engagements.

This year, the following DIASPORAS@ gatherings were hosted by local organizations to initiate the first of many conversations to come:


Video Archives

 

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton

USAID Administrator Dr. Rajiv Shah

Special Representative Kris Balderston

Global Diaspora Forum interview with USAID’s Romi Bhatia