Browsing by Subject "Dominican Republic"

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  • Folkersma, Liisa Karoliina (Helsingfors universitet, 2011)
    The aim of this thesis is to examine migration of educated Dominicans in light of global processes. Current global developments have resulted in increasingly global movements of people, yet people tend to come from certain places in large numbers rather than others. At the same time, international migration is increasingly selective, which shows in the disproportional number of educated migrants. This study discovers individual and societal motivations that explain why young educated Dominicans decide to migrate and return. The theoretical framework of this thesis underlines that migration is a dynamic process rooted in other global developments. Migratory movements should be seen as a result of interacting macro- and microstructures, which are linked by a number of intermediate mechanisms, meso-structures. The way individuals perceive opportunity structures concretises the way global developments mediate to the micro-level. The case of the Dominican Republic shows that there is a diversity of local responses to the world system, as Dominicans have produced their own unique historical responses to global changes. The thesis explains that Dominican migration is importantly conditioned by socioeconomic and educational background. Migration is more accessible for the educated middle class, because of the availability of better resources. Educated migrants also seem less likely to rely on networks to organize their migrations. The role of networks in migration differs by socioeconomic background on the one hand, and by the specific connections each individual has to current and previous migrants on the other hand. The personal and cultural values of the migrant are also pivotal. The central argument of this thesis is that a veritable culture of migration has evolved in the Dominican Republic. The actual economic, political and social circumstances have led many Dominicans to believe that there are better opportunities elsewhere. The globalisation of certain expectations on the one hand, and the development of the specifically Dominican feeling of ‘externalism’ on the other, have for their part given rise to the Dominican culture of migration. The study also suggests that the current Dominican development model encourages migration. Besides global structures, local structures are found to be pivotal in determining how global processes are materialised in a specific place. The research for this thesis was conducted by using qualitative methodology. The focus of this thesis was on thematic interviews that reveal the subject’s point of view and give a fuller understanding of migration and mobility of the educated. The data was mainly collected during a field research phase in Santo Domingo, the Dominican Republic in December 2009 and January 2010. The principal material consists of ten thematic interviews held with educated Dominican current or former migrants. Four expert interviews, relevant empirical data, theoretical literature and newspaper articles were also comprehensively used.