The role of transnational diaspora finance for the emerging economies’ farmers: Embeddedness, financial access, and innovation amongst Indian Punjabi Farmers

This funding model includes a 36 month fully funded PhD Studentship, in-line with the Research Council values, which comprises a tax-free stipend paid monthly (2024/5 - £19,237) per year and a Full Time Fee Scholarship for up to 3 years, subject to you making satisfactory progression within your PhD. 

All applicants will receive the same stipend irrespective of fee status.

Application Closing Date: 
23:59 on Tuesday 30th April 2024 for a start date of the 2nd September 2024.

How to Apply 

To apply, please complete the project proposal form,ensuring that you quote the project reference, and then complete the online application where you will be required to upload your proposal in place of a personal statement as a pdf document. 

You will also be required to upload two references, at least one being an academic reference, and your qualification/s of entry (Bachelor/Masters certificate/s and transcript/s). 

Project Title: The role of transnational diaspora finance for the emerging economies’ farmers: Embeddedness, financial access, and innovation amongst Indian Punjabi Farmers

Project Lead: Dr Navjot Sandhu

Reference: TDF,SMF

Project Description

Over two million Indian Punjabi farmers have migrated to the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand; they remit money to support their families’ consumption needs and to support them to engage with entrepreneurship. However, with the passage of time the diaspora have made homes within their host countries, thereby, diverting their income for personal and business use in countries of residence. However, there is anecdotal evidence that diaspora desire to invest within farming in the Indian Punjab, transfer technology and knowledge to enhance employment and earning potentials of Punjab as well as make financial gains on their investments. The limiting factor for diaspora to invest is the information, trust deficit as well as robust communication technologies. Thus, this research aims to investigate barriers for diaspora to invest in the Indian Punjab and formulate strategies to motivate diaspora to invest as well as support Punjabi farmers with modern knowledge and technologies. The motivation of this study is to investigate the role of diaspora finance, identify challenges, opportunities and formulate policy advice for the policymakers and practitioners to promote a framework to support diaspora and Indian Punjabi farmers. Consequently, this will improve efficiency, productivity, economic prosperity that will help to reduce poverty, remove inequality (SDG1& 2) by creating sustainable regions and communities (SDG11), hence economic growth (SDG8) in the Indian Punjab.

Anticipated Findings and Contribution to Knowledge 

This novel study investigates how Punjabi diaspora (from farming communities) contribute towards the economic growth of their country of origin through their knowledge, experience, remittance, and investment. Furthermore, this research highlights the barrier and challenges encountered by countries that restrict them to harness the full potential of this valuable financial resource. 

The Indian diaspora living in the west migrated from a particular region Indian Punjab, a rural farming region. The proposed study is unique in that it is  the first of this kind of study that specifically examines the role of diaspora finance for the farming community within an emerging economy such as India. 

This in-depth exploratory study aims to investigate attitudes, barriers to invest in Indian Punjab and consider how best to overcome information gap to motivate and enable diaspora to invest. This distinctive and innovative study will help to develop a mechanism to adopt a strategic approach to channel remittance flow to support the farming sector to achieve food security and sustainable economic growth. Moreover, this underexplored niche has potential to benefit from this  research  to formulate policy and practice that will lend itself to economies worldwide. 

The findings of this research are impactful in that it will enable policy makers to develop policies and enact laws to reduce barriers for diaspora to invest in their countries of origin to provide a conducive environment to enable diaspora to empower Punjabi farmers modernise their operations and practices.