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Sustainability 2013, 5(10), 4106-4123;

Circulating Practices: Migration and Translocal Development in Washington D.C. and Cochabamba, Bolivia

Department of Geography, Augustana College, 639 38th Street, Rock Island, IL 61201, USA
Received: 5 August 2013 / Revised: 7 September 2013 / Accepted: 10 September 2013 / Published: 25 September 2013
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Migrant remittances are increasingly seen as a potential form of development in the global South, but the impact of international migration on sending regions is far from straightforward. In this article, I analyze migrant communities of origin in rural Bolivia as dynamic places that are constantly reproduced through connections with other places. I document the movement of migrant practices between Washington D.C. and Cochabamba and the influence of monetary and non-monetary flows on Bolivian cultural practices, politics, and development. I demonstrate how hometown associations and returning migrants have transferred organizational practices and political ideas about development from the United States to rural Bolivia. In addition, I explore migration’s role in struggles over belonging in Cochabamba, focusing on the efforts by migrants in Washington D.C. to stake their claim through transnational houses and collective remittance projects and on recent internal migration from other regions in Bolivia. Finally, I assess the sustainability of migrant-led development in Cochabamba. Although collaboration with migrants can strengthen the local state by providing more resources, it conditions the type of development that can take place and has yet to provide adequate opportunities for returning migrants or young people in rural Bolivia. View Full-Text
Keywords: development; social remittances; migrant transnationalism; citizenship; Bolivia development; social remittances; migrant transnationalism; citizenship; Bolivia
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Strunk, C. Circulating Practices: Migration and Translocal Development in Washington D.C. and Cochabamba, Bolivia. Sustainability 2013, 5, 4106-4123.

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