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iDiaspora - two years after: Accelerating diaspora's global engagement in the post-pandemic era

Type of Event
Conference

Context

The iDiaspora Platform was officially launched on 8 October 2018 during the International Dialogue on Migration. Now, two years on, iDiaspora continues growing and evolving to meet the needs and demands of transnational communities around the world, especially in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. Since its initial launch, the Platform has received more than 389,000 visits by users from 109 countries around the world, including India, US, UK, Australia, and Brazil to name just a few. During the first months of the pandemic, iDiaspora brought together over 300 members of disparate transnational communities who convened to share their experiences and effective practices in contributing to address the effects of the health crisis in their countries of origin and destination. Throughout this process, we have been listening to and collecting feedback and inputs from the users and the partners on how the platform can improve and respond to emerging needs of the communities it serves. While incremental changes and upgrades have been made continuously to the functionality and collaboration modalities of the platform, this year we have invested in incorporating a majority of the suggestions and inputs received in a new revamped version of the platform. Several new functionalities have been designed to facilitate navigation of the platform and to recognize the contributions of the most active members of our online community. To commemorate the two-year anniversary of the official launch of iDiaspora we are pleased to invite you to discuss the progress we have made and where we want to go as well as to join us for the release of this new upgraded version of the platform.

Objectives

  • Take stock of the developments during last two years with a particular focus on COVID-19.
  • Present the new functionalities of the new revamped iDiaspora platform.
  • Showcase the collaboration potential between diasporas and key partners in the virtual space.
Agenda
Session Format Timing
Welcoming session 15:00 - Laura Thompson, IOM DDG 20 mins
2nd Session: iDiaspora Presentation of Progress of iDiaspora after 2 years

15:20 - Larisa Lara - Transnational Communities and Digital Communications Officer - IOM

Presentation of New Functionalities

15:35 - Roberto Cancel - Senior Regional Labour Mobility and Human Development Specialist - IOM

35 mins
3rd Session: Working together Reflection of iDiaspora’s role in building global community

15:55 - Peter Kwok - Chair of Global Diaspora Confederation

Perspectives on how iDiaspora serves transnational communities

16:05 - Carine Nsoudou, PhD - ADEPT and Laura de la Fuente Red Global MX – Ireland

Feedback session

16:20 - All participants

35 mins

 

Topic / Panel Areas

Welcoming Remarks

Laura Thompson

Deputy Director General of the International Organization for Migration since 2009, she was Ambassador and Permanent Representative, as well as Counselor and First Secretary of Costa Rica to the United Nations Office and other international organizations in Geneva, and Cultural Attaché at the Costa Rican Delegation to UNESCO in Paris. She has held leadership responsibilities within humanitarian affairs in the main governing bodies, as president or vice-president of the governing bodies of IOM, UNHCR, the World Intellectual Property Organization, the International Labour Organization, among others. In addition to her diplomatic experience, she has worked as a Legal Officer for international organizations in Geneva, including the Security Council's United Nations Compensation Commission, experiences that equipped her with an in-depth understanding of the functioning of international organizations.

MODERATOR

Kemo Camara

Founder and CEO of Omek, a community-centric platform for the social and professional advancement of the African diaspora talents. He has also co-founded many businesses and non-profit organizations and played various leadership roles in community organizations. He has more than 15 years of professional experience in leadership and management working for multinational corporations including banks and manufacturing companies.

PANELISTS

Dr. Larisa Lara

Transnational Communities and Digital Communications Officer at IOM. Larisa competed her joint PhD in Migration Studies and in Social and Political Sciences at the University of Paris and at the University of Liège. She holds an MSc in Migration Studies from the University of Oxford and an MA in Conflict, Security, and Development from King’s College London. Larisa has published multiple academic articles and policy papers specializing in transnationalism and diaspora’s engagement.

Roberto Cancel 

Senior Regional Labour Mobility and Human Development Specialist at IOM. Has worked with migrant and diaspora populations for over a decade with a focus on civic engagement issues and the linkage of migration and development. In this work he has gained a wide range of experience from East Asia to North Africa and Europe to the Americas. Before taking up his current position at the IOM Regional Office for South America, he covered the North Africa and the Middle East region (2017-2019) for the Regional Office in Cairo. Prior to this, he developed and managed projects promoting diaspora engagement for the IOM mission in Kosovo (2010-2014). Mr. Cancel holds a Master's degree in Development and Cultural Studies with a focus on migration and development from the KU Leuven, as well as a Bachelor's degree in International Affairs and Anthropology from Florida State University. As a migrant and member of the Puerto Rican diaspora, Mr. Cancel continues his efforts to strengthen the positive link between migration and development by empowering migrants as agents of social change and economic growth.

Peter Kwok

Chairman and Founder of the UK Federation of Chinese Professionals (UKFCP), a national community organization for global Chinese professionals in the country. He has previously shared advices with the Scottish Government, local councils, universities and SMEs on diaspora strategies and also at the World Overseas Professional Associations' Chairpersons Conference organized by the Chinese State
Council.

Dr. Carine Nsoudou

Before being appointed Executive Director of ADEPT, Carine Nsoudou has held various positions in the field of international cooperation. Successively Country Officer in charge of several West African countries, Evaluation and Programming Officer within the European Commission's Directorate General for Development and International Cooperation, Carine has also worked as an independent Consultant for the GIZ and ECDPM notably before becoming Head of the European Development Policy unit in the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs. She has acquired in-depth knowledge of and expertise on the aid architecture and current development-related issues, including those pertaining to migration.Passionate about Africa and sustainable development, Carine holds a PhD in African Studies - History of Contemporary Africa - and a Master's degree in Risk Management and Corporate Social Responsibility.

Laura De La Fuente

President of Red Global MX Ireland – Mexican Network of Talented Professionals endorsed by the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Founding member of Latin America Trade Council of Ireland (LATC) Co-founder of the Mexican Fintech Easypay. Founder of the Chamber of Commerce of Mexico in Ireland. Sociologist. Senior Project Manager in Information Technologies with over 20 years in Corporate Financial Services, Fintech and Insurance sectors. Passionate about Professional Networking, Diaspora and Innovation Strategy to build networks for Mexican and Irish businesses.

Target Audience

The event is open to all diaspora communities with a focus on facilitating exchange between African, Asian, and European diaspora communities. All participants will then be invited to register through iDiaspora and will have the opportunity to share their experiences and submit inputs and initiatives during the plenary discussion. 

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