2020 Research Paper Award, Section on Asia/Asian America, American Sociological Association
2020 Honorable Mention for Best Article Award, Filipino Studies Section, Association for Asian American Studies
2016 Martin O. Heisler Award for Best Graduate Student Paper, Ethnicity, Nationalism and Migration Section, International Studies Association
2016 Honorable Mention for Best Graduate Student Paper Award, Section on Human Rights, American Sociological Association
Over the last century, the activities of migrants and refugees have been crucial in homeland democratization. How does the relationship between the homeland and hostland shape their strategies? Comparing the activism of Filipinos in the U.S. and in the Netherlands from 1972–1982 against the dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos, this study shows that linkage influences the demands, arenas, and tactics of movement actors. Analysis of archival and interview data shows that activists in the U.S. pursued foreign policy lobbying due to strong linkage between the U.S. and the Philippines, which provided activists an accessible institutional target, channel, and resources for their claims making. In contrast, through transnational advocacy networks, Filipinos in the Netherlands engaged in naming and shaming in nongovernment tribunal due to weak Dutch-Philippine state relations. The article considers the relationship between two polities and societies as a shifting transnational field of relations that shapes the agency of actors in cross-border activism.
“Transnational Contention, Domestic Integration: Assimilating into the Hostland Polity through Homeland Activism.”
While scholars have studied the political incorporation of migrants and refugees through measures related to naturalisation and voting, others have investigated the ways by which participation in protests and other forms of activism foster assimilation. But how is transnational contention connected to domestic integration? Using archival research and life history interviews of Filipino migrant activists in the U.S. and the Netherlands and drawing from the literatures on immigrant assimilation and social movements, I show the processes and mechanisms that enable activists to become simultaneously involved in the movements for homeland regime change for migrant/minority rights in the hostland. Thus, they assimilate into the domestic polity while they participate in transnational politics. I argue that as activists perform the functions associated with homeland activism, they develop relations and networks that allow new forms of collective identities to emerge, often rooted in civil-society spaces in the hostland. This study contributes to the debate on transnationalism and assimilation, which has recently moved from contradiction to synergy.
“Does the Global North Still Dominate Women’ International Organizing? A Network Analysis from 1978 to 2008?”
Over the last century, women increasingly transcended national boundaries to exchange information, build solidarity, and bring change. Accounts suggest that as women’s international presence expanded, the types of women who participated also shifted. During the first wave of women’s movements, White Western women dominated, but over time women of the Global South increasingly organized themselves. Yet we do not know whether North-South inequalities in women’s organizational membership have diminished. We collect longitudinal network data on 447 women’s international nongovernmental organizations (WINGOs) and use visual tools and network measures to explore changes in the network structure from 1978 to 2008. Results suggest (1) WINGOs—while increasing in frequency—are not connecting to greater numbers of countries, (2) the North/South split in WINGO memberships does not change over time, (3) significant power differences between the North and South persist, and (4) substantial inequalities in WINGO memberships within the Global South also exist.
“Diaspora Activism in a Non-Traditional Country of Destination: The Case of Filipinos in the Netherlands.”
Diasporas have played important roles in democratization in their homelands. But how does diaspora mobilization occur when the country of settlement has a small and isolated ethnic community, the host and homeland governments have weak relations, and the conflict is invisible in the geographies of power? Using case study research, I analyse how solidarity groups in the Netherlands facilitated the emergence and growth of diaspora mobilization for democracy in the Philippines during the dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos. My findings show that in cases where exiles and migrants lack pre-existing economic, political and social ties in the host society, solidarity groups can affect the political opportunity structure in the host country, permitting the promotion of certain claims and demands in the public sphere. Furthermore, diaspora mobilization can develop within the formal organizations or associational networks of solidarity groups.
“Competing News Frames and Hegemonic Discourses in the Construction of Contemporary Immigration and Immigrants in the United States.”
Using content analysis of the New York Times and USA Today, this study investigates the framing of immigration in two policy debates: on the Border Protection, Anti-terrorism, and Illegal Immigration Control Act of 2005 (H.R. 4437) in 2006 and on the Support Our Law Enforcement and Safe Neighborhoods Act or Arizona Senate Bill (S.B.) 1070 in 2010. The bills crystallized various discourses on immigration in American society. Drawing on literature on media discourses, news frames, and framing processes, the article examines the attempt of mainstream mass media to reduce the complexity of immigration into palatable talking points. The findings demonstrate that through framing, the media create diametrically opposed representations of immigration and contemporary immigrants but at the same time normalize dominant ways of thinking and talking about immigration that sustain and consolidate power relationships.
From the campaign of Chilean exiles all over the world to overthrow the regime of Augusto Pinochet in the 1970s to the contemporary mobilization of the Kurdish diaspora in Western Europe, various cases demonstrate the persistence of homeland ties among migrants, especially those who experienced repression and displacement by the government in their countries of origin. Diverse frameworks and concepts in both the humanities and the social sciences have been deployed to explain the involvement of migrants in politics in their home countries, from “long-distance nationalism” to “transnational activism.” Each points to different dynamic processes and causal mechanisms. In recent years, scholars have advocated the use of a social movement framework in the analysis of migrant mobilization, despite the marginalization of such studies in theory development. In this article, I examine the concepts put forward by the political process model (PPM) as they apply to the analysis of migrants’ involvement in politics in their native land. I propose ways for PPM to be useful in the explanation of the dynamics and processes of homeland-oriented migrant mobilization.
This article explores the emergence and development of the Philippine coalition-building strategy in the World Trade Organization (WTO) from the Uruguay Round to the Doha Development Agenda. Coalition building is an outcome of social learning, adaptation, and bounded rationality of trade negotiators based on years of working within the norms of the WTO.