Nurturing Our Latino Diaspora Network

Unleash the power of Latino connectedness for good.


Diaspora (from Greek διασπορά, “scattering, dispersion”) is a scattered population whose origin lies within a smaller geographic locale.

Diaspora can also refer to the movement of the population from its original homeland. Diaspora has come to refer particularly to historical mass dispersions of an involuntary nature, such as the expulsion of Jews from Judea, the fleeing of Greeks after the fall of Constantinople, the African Trans-Atlantic slave trade, the southern Chinese or Hindus of South Asia during the coolie trade, the Irish during and after the Irish Famine, the displacement of Palestinians in the 20th century and the exile and deportation of Circassians.

Recently, scholars have distinguished between different kinds of diaspora, based on its causes such as imperialism, trade or labor migrations, or by the kind of social coherence within the diaspora community and its ties to the ancestral lands.

Some diaspora communities maintain strong political ties with their homeland. Other qualities that may be typical of many diasporas are thoughts of return, relationships with other communities in the diaspora, and lack of full integration into the host country.

Last year

Last year I had the unique opportunity to travel to Israel and get a feeling of what it means both from people that live in the diaspora, as well as for those that live in the motherhood. Also I saw this by living in Miami for 8 years and having the opportunity to visit Cuba on several occasions.

This is probably one of the strongest links that I have ever felt. There are emotional connections, also very strong historical ones, family ties, business ideas, patriotism, culture (music, art, food, language, traditions) and religion.

You could begin by picturing a network, with every single node being and individual in all of his or her dimensions. This node is alive and its growing as it develops new skills, builds new capabilities, travels, creates relationships, learns something, is curious about a theme or makes an idea come through.

With technology today, all these dimensions can be easily shared, expanded and augmented.

But in order to fully grasp its meaning and potential, I would like to focus on one particular node, a very relevant one for me as I have personally witnessed for a number of years the uniqueness of his vision, the warmth of his heart, the power of his passions and the drive of his dreams.

The node I am referring to is Mr. Jose Galicot, a recognized figure in Tijuana/San Diego and an active member of the Mexican Jewish community.

Jose lives with a passion for Mexico, a permanent link to Israel, a vision for his hometown Tijuana, a dream of a better future and a family that extends the notion of blood as it integrates colleagues, friends, co-workers, suppliers, government officials, business leaders, and basically anyone who is touched by or able to touch this valuable human being.

I was fortunate to become his ‘brother’ a term that he uses to greet me when I call him and this is an example of how a node extends and augments.

I know that naming an individual a node can be misinterpreted, but I find it necessary to position the Diaspora within our digital, always connected and interactive way of living in the XXI Century.

This is only the beginning and if we do this right, we may as well have in front of us one of the most transformational possibilities of our century: To Nurture our Diaspora.

Why did I select this node as an example?

There were quite interesting developments in Jose’s life which made him who he is. I will not pretend to write his Biography but I will try to contextualize in brief.

Jose Galicot developed his leadership skills by managing youth movements in several countries, he felt rejected as he integrated into Tijuana and was deeply hurt and moved by the sadness of the negative stories around his beloved city (and the one where the Diaspora can be felt like no other).

Jose moved on to succeeded in business and made an effort to link into his historical roots by developing meaningful connections in Israel.

But the most influential project that he conceived and which drives his passion today is Tijuana Innovadora; a vision that is transforming the city on a daily basis and on a broad permanent scope.

It began as a series of high level events, a gathering of the minds and an expo of new ideas. It has now been transformed into a multi-dimensional and bi-national movement consisting of eight spheres as he calls them

Next- The 8 multi-dimensional and bi-national movement spheres.

Fernando Valenzuela
Fernando Valenzuela
Fernando is currently head of Aspen Institute education program in Mexico and Partner at Global Impact Edtech Alliance. He was formerly President McGraw-Hill Education, Latin America. He is a recognized senior executive, entrepreneur, speaker and board level leader with international background. He has founded and led successful enterprises in Latin America for over 25 years. He holds a Degree in Computer Science from the Universidad Iberoamericana, and an MBA in International Business by the University of Miami. Active member of Wharton Fellows, ENOVA Network of Latin America CEOs, Center for Hemispheric Policy and Council of the Americas, board member at Inroads. He was most recently President at Cengage Learning / National Geographic Learning Latin America and founder of LINNEA, the First Laboratory for Innovation in Learning Experiences in Latin America. There Fernando lead the transformation of the educational models and creating high value learning experiences by engaging students with technology. Website LinkedIn

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