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The Migration–Development Nexus and Organizational Time


  • This research was part of a larger study funded by The MacArthur Foundation, and conducted in collaboration with Jennifer Holdaway (Social Science Research Council) and Fang Jing (Kunming Medical College) which also examined the relationship between return migration and health in Yunnan, China.


While some migration research looks at how time influences individual migration trajectories, little attention has been paid to the ways in which temporal considerations influence migration and development. We propose the idea of “organizational time” and argue that bringing time into sharper focus calls into question how the categories of migration and return affect organizational change; reveals how the career stage at which migrants leave affects their ability to influence organizational change when they return, and shows how the role of senders and receivers of social remittances shifts over time. We draw on research on the impact of return migration and social remittances on institutional capacity building and policymaking in the health sectors in Gujarat, India to make these arguments.