Conference looks at changing behaviour of immigrant communities

Canadian and international scholars are meeting for a two-day conference at York to discuss “The Politics of Transnational Ties: Implicatons for Research, Communities, Policy” on March 7-8, to examine the changing behaviour of immigrant communities in the new global economic order. Conference organizers believe that Canada, as a major receiver country for an estimated 150 million migrants worldwide, has a key interest in understanding how migrants continue to have strong links to their homelands.

“Global communications technology has made it possible for immigrants to organize and act across borders, and the scope of transnational social and political activities among Canadian immigrants has also increased ,” said Luin Goldring, sociologist at the York Centre for Research on Latin America and the Caribbean (CERLAC).

Research presented at the conference will focus on the transnational activities of Canadian communities originating from Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, including studies of Sri Lankan Tamils, Sikhs and Filipinos.

“The workshop challenges scholars of Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean to think about how the study of these regions should move outside of traditional geographic boundaries to encompass broader global phenomena,” said Peter Vandergeest, director of the York Centre for Asian Research (YCAR). “Asian studies is no longer just the study of Asia, but also of people who think of themselves as Asian wherever they are.”

The conference is hosted by YCAR and CERLAC. For more information check the Media Relations Web site at and for program details, visit the YCAR Web site at