William Degbey

Sustainable Reconstruction: The Role of Diaspora Networks in International Collaborative Engagements

Diasporas (i.e., migrants and their descendants who maintain a relationship with their country of origin) and their networks have evolved into important actors and resources shaping the success of international business collaborative engagements. According to the United Nations 2020 report, the growing numbers, and diverse roles of hundreds of millions of migrants and diasporas will continue to rise despite global crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, the importance of diaspora networks for understanding how to reconstruct sustainably has so far attracted limited attention. This key limitation is particularly of concern in international business collaborative engagements because such engagements predominantly emphasize interfirm relationships.

As a result, this scientific research offers a complementary pathway that considers the importance of diasporas and their social contacts to serve practical business, particularly for Finnish organizations. More theoretically, the study’s distinctiveness is underpinned by the conceptual core of diasporic ties, which thus extends a micro-relational perspective to sustainable reconstruction in international business collaborative engagements. 

This study’s contribution to international business and management scholarly research will expand understanding of the vital question: “How do diaspora networks of Finnish organizations contribute to their sustainable reconstruction through international business collaborative engagements?”. Moreover, it will help unpack major drivers and mechanisms that undergird this area of inquiry and foster sustainable reconstruction to revive the growth of the Finnish economy and reinforce its competitive strength. 

As an Associate Professor in the new tenure track system at the University of Vaasa, it is crucial to deliver high-quality research output in leading and top-tier journals with relevant practical implications to move successfully to the next stage in the tenure track. The awarded grant allows me to work toward fulfilling this crucial requirement as a visiting scholar at Harvard University by focusing mainly on research and writing, reflecting on my research work and career, exploring new lines of research inquiry as well as seizing the opportunity to interact and discuss my research work with respected scholars at Harvard University campus and research seminars for current and future research collaborations.