According to the United Nations, more than 230 million people were living outside of their countries of birth in 2014. The generic term often used to identify these groups of people is “Diaspora”, which refers to a community of expatriates who are spread around the world and outside of their homeland. Estimates show that remittances or the money sent back home by the Diaspora from developing countries was $404 billion in 2014. The amount for total global remittances was as high as $600 billion. No wonder, therefore, that Snapchat, WhatsApp and other service providers want to be part of this phenomenon.
Beyond sending money back home, the Diaspora is also an important source of knowledge and business links. Not all international migrants are unskilled people. Many are professionals with high levels of education and specialized skills searching for better jobs and income in more advanced economies. The departure of such professionals out of their home countries represents loss of skill and "brain drain". However, there is now an increasing recognition that “brain drain” can be transformed into “brain gain” by mobilizing the Diaspora and engaging them in the development of their home countries. What is more, they do not necessarily have to return home to make a difference. What is needed is for the Diaspora to connect with each other and share their knowledge with other professionals back home.
The problem is how to remain connected. In fact, this explains the growing interest in Diaspora Knowledge Network (DKN). Such networks have already been established by Diasporas from many countries, including Israel, China, India and Korea. The challenge facing many of them, however, is the lack of an effective networking tool that will allow them to link by their professional expertise, area of knowledge, location, specialization and areas of interest.
In this respect, Assembly Networking is a timely initiative with a unique location-driven application that enables the Diaspora to stay connected even when they are travelling across countries. Assembly was founded by a team who are themselves Diasporas and who understand the needs of the Diaspora to bond. It is their wish that this easy-to-use "app" will serve as a platform for linking people from the same homeland and enable them to achieve their dream of making a difference in their country of origin.
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