Convergence or Divergence: Practice of Science by Migrant Faculty in India and the United States | Humanities & Social Sciences

Convergence or Divergence: Practice of Science by Migrant Faculty in India and the United States

Tuesday Seminar
Roli Verma
Date and Time: 
Tue, 12/01/2016 - 12:00am
02:57 PM to 04:27 PM
HSS Committee Room (MS 610)
Abstract* Do immigrant faculty trained in the American higher education institutions converge or diverge in practice of science when they continue to stay in the United States or return to their home country? Modern science paradigm of universalism holds that location will not matter significantly and immigrants in both places will converge in their scientific practices. Constructionist paradigm, in contrast, holds that local setting will matter and immigrants in both places will diverge in their scientific practices. Yet, there are very few studies on science as practiced by immigrant faculty. This paper utilizes data from 134 in-depth interviews with two groups of Indian immigrant faculty in science and engineering (S&E): (i) those who studied and worked in the U.S. and then returned to India; and (ii) those who continue to work in the U.S. It compares the practice of science by immigrant faculty in these two nations and outlines some important differences between them on the sources of funding, ease in securing grants, management of grants, research environment, professional autonomy and research type. Implications of these findings are discussed within the frameworks of universalism and constructionism. * Paper co-author: Meghna Sabharwal Bio Roli Varma is Carl Hatch Endowed professor in the School of Public Administration at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque. Her research focuses on women and minorities in information technology and immigrants in the science and engineering workforce. Her research has been supported by the National Science Foundation. She is the author of Harbingers of Global Change: India's Techno-Immigrants in the United States (2007). She is an invited member of the Social Science Advisory Board of the National Center of Women in Information Technology in the USA. She served on the Association for Computing Machinery Task Force on Job Migration in 2004–2005.