Maximizing Diaspora Engagement through Evidence-Based Policies: Data, Methodologies, and Tools


In preparation for the 3rd International Forum on Migration Statistics, which will be held in Santiago, Chile, from 24 – 26 January 2023 as an in-person and hybrid event, the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), through its Statistics and Population Divisions, the International Organization for Migration (IOM), and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) are organizing a series of virtual webinars open to all interested parties. This webinar is the first of the series. 

Diasporas are development actors with economic, social, cultural and human capital. They contribute to their countries of origin and destination through transnational links and initiatives. Nevertheless, there are many gaps in data on the size and profile of diaspora communities as well as their contributions. 

The absence of specified data impedes the development and implementation of evidence-based diaspora engagement and related development-focused policies and programmes. Many of these data gaps are endemic for practitioners and researchers due to the lack of effective and efficient methodologies for data collection and analysis, and there are few standardised tools and practises that support the collection of comparable data across populations and contexts. In addition, current methodologies tend to over focus on the impact of remittances as the main economic contribution of diasporas leaving aside other relevant economic contributions such as investment, philanthropy, trade and tourism.  

The aim of this session is to present the two innovative methodologies developed by IOM to contribute to the better understand and systematize diasporas’ capital and potential for development: The IOM Diaspora Mapping Toolkit and Contributions and Counting: Guidance on Measuring the Economic Impact of your Diaspora beyond Remittances


08 December 2022


Time (CET)


13:00 – 13:45

PART 1 – The IOM Diaspora Mapping Toolkit

13.00 – 13.05

Opening remarks:

  • Elizabeth Warn, LMI Head, IOM
  • Thomas Liebig, OECD

13.05 – 13.20

Presentation of the IOM Diaspora Mapping Toolkit – Dr. Michella Vanore – UNU Merit

13.20 – 13.45

Panel 1: Maximising data collection in diaspora mapping exercises - Government of Eswatini, Dr. Andres Solimano, InDiaspora.

Moderator: Larisa Lara (IOM)

14.00 – 14.40

PART 2 – Contributions and Counting

14.00 – 14.15

Presentation of Contributions and Counting – Leon Isaacs, DMA Global

14.15 – 14.40

Panel 2: Maximising data collection in diaspora mapping exercises

Government Moldova, Ms. Violina Donu, Deputy Head of the Diaspora Relations Bureau

Moderator: Roberto Cancel (IOM)

14.40 – 14.55

Q & A

14.55 – 15.00

Closing Remarks

Note: Live interpretation will be provided in English, Spanish, and French for this event.

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