Are Diaspora Remittances More Effective than Developmental Aid?

Photo by Daquella manera
According to diaspora expert and economist, David Phillips, the growing global trend of human migration may prove to be one of the most effective ways to bring development and aid to impoverished nations.  Phillips argues in a new book entitled Development Without Aid: The Decline of Development Aid and the Rise of the Diaspora, (you'll want to shop for the Kindle version) that remittances from diasporas tend to provide a more consistent source of public goods than direct humanitarian aid which is often diverted to "conspicuous consumption".  His arguments are nicely summarized in a recent post over at the People Move blog.

Phillip's brief article is a bit technical in places but very insightful.  We keep telling you all that diaspora phenomenon is revolutionizing the world.  The scattering of people is the key missiological issue of our time - the human tidal wave is upon us!

Here's a powerful paragraph from Phillips:

Relatively recently the World’s diasporas have emerged. Over 215 million first generation ‘permanent’ migrants now live in host countries. Remittances have risen significantly faster than migrant populations which have risen faster than the world population. By 2014 they will surpass half a trillion dollars, four times official development aid. In Sub Saharan Africa remittances have doubled since 2006 and on a realistic count significantly exceed aid. The average skill levels and incomes of migrants have also risen and their average educational levels exceed those of many rich countries including the US. Increasingly diaspora flows are being invested rather than consumed.

I hope you will check out David Phillips' article and take some extra time to explore the excellent "People Move" blog by the World Bank.

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