The project will contribute to international knowledge transfer and networking through an end-of-project public seminar in Hong Kong to present our findings to academics in the field, key stakeholders (e.g. British Council; International Organisation for Migration; British, Malaysian and Thai consulates in HK), tourism authorities and community organisations concerned with migration, responsible tourism and residential development in Asia. This seminar will serve as a forum for both project dissemination and a multilateral deliberation on the policy-related opportunities and challenges pertaining more broadly to lifestyle migration. The event will be hosted by the Centre of Asian Studies at the University of Hong Kong, as the Centre houses a number of research fellows (including the Hong Kong PI) and research projects focusing on Asia and has excellent working links with relevant academic communities (e.g. Asian Research Centre for Migration at Chulalongkorn and Thamassat Universities in Thailand), government agencies, consulates and NGOs working on migration in Asia.
We will also produce a small leaflet and a 20 page booklet summarising our findings for distribution to non-academic end-users in the field sites. We have experience of this type of publication through previous projects and it has proved to be a very successful and efficient way of presenting findings for non-academic audiences. These leaflets and booklets will also be made available through our web site, which itself will continue beyond the life of the project as a means of disseminating information and findings and featuring contributions of others where appropriate.
(Among others) The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office Consular Services, who have recently commissioned work from IPPR on the British diaspora, stands to benefit greatly from this research enabling them to deliver effective public service, and help vulnerable groups not only in times of crisis but also through involvement to prevent crisis (as Robert Tinline, Head of the Consular Assistance Group, noted at the launch of the IPPR report).The FCO might also use our findings (via the booklet above) in engagement with the British diaspora as a resource (as the Irish do through ‘The Ireland Funds’). Our focus on the role of digital communications will be particularly useful, since The Ireland Funds has found that social networking sites and digital communications are a powerful way to mobilise their diaspora’s rich resources. Expatriate groups, local charities and other government and non government organisations that are impacted by these trends (eg International Consortium of British pensioners) will also gain in-depth social science research to inform their demands for resources, their activities and programmes.
The researchers are experienced in working in partnership with external, non-academic organisations. O’Reilly has provided reports and verbal presentations of the findings of her research for local government and voluntary organisations in Andalucía and the East Midlands, for the UK Office for National Statistics, Age Concern UK, and the Royal Statistical Society. Lee has held and successfully completed three major research grants by the ESRC and the British Academy in the field of sociology of migration, many with a policy focus on health, sex work and trafficking of migrants. She is bilingual (fluent in English and Chinese) and has a proven track record in disseminating research findings internationally to diverse professional and academic audiences. Stones has worked with general practitioners (among others), translating his work for practice in an applied field, is bilingual (in English and Thai) and has strong professional and academic networks in Thailand through which we can channel findings.