Indian diaspora population and space: national register, UN Global Migration Database and Big Data

Nachatter Singh Garha, Andreu Domingo

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearch

    1 Citation (Scopus)

    Abstract

    © 2019, © 2019 Organisation for Diaspora Initiatives, New Delhi. In 2017, the Indian diaspora was one of the largest in the world. But until the last decade of the twentieth century, due to the limited interest of the successive governments of India, a regular register for the diaspora was not maintained. In the 1990s, accelerated migration under globalization and the growing interests of the Indian government to use it as a source of political and economic power raised the need to quantify the size and demarcate the geopolitical boundaries of the diaspora. Consequently, since 2001, the government of India began collecting data on its diaspora from the countries of destination. This information often suffers from incomplete coverage, conflicting political interests, and methodological nationalism; and provides distorted images of the diaspora. Recently, the emergence of ‘UN Global Migration Database’ and ‘Big Data’ creates an opportunity to explore other aspects of the diaspora. The main objectives of this paper are: first, to quantify the size of the diaspora population and demarcate the geopolitical boundaries of the Indian diaspora from the available sources; second, to explore the sociodemographic characteristics and internal diversity of the diaspora population; and finally, to compare the advantages and shortcomings of these data sources.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)134-159
    JournalDiaspora Studies
    Volume12
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul 2019

    Keywords

    • Facebook data
    • Indian diaspora
    • internal diversity
    • national register
    • UN Global Migration Database

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