Welcome back! After hours of research, I have found a way to streamline and categorize my research. Instead of having a loose interpretation of the countries i’m studying, I have defined them as the countries that comprise the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) which include Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. There are two reasons for why I chose to use this block of nations. The first reason is that my advisors are more knowledgeable about this region which will help me when it comes to studying the specific labor markets and governing policies of the regions. The second reason I chose to focus my research is that the SAARC is involved in many regional trade deals and similar economic policies with other nations which will make it easier to generalize my research.
Additionally after talking to my internal advisor this week, I have decided to focus on victims who have originated from South Asia instead of those exploited within the region. Because my original purpose was to study how economic globalization affects human trafficking, it would be more logical to study how a country’s economic policy affects victims that originated from there.
I have started to form my scale for globalization as well. I finalized my inputs for the index : amount of exports, amount of imports, the amount of multinational corporations (corporations that have facilities and other assets in at least one country other than its home country), and direct foreign investment in these countries. As of now there are already several globalization indexes ranking countries but there are several reasons for why I chose to make my own. First, current globalization scales takes into account measures such as political and social globalization which I’m not measuring and studying. Second, these factors such as volume of trade and foreign investment are what I expect to directly impact trafficking.
I know this week’s blog post was kind of all over the place. I had to once again redefine my research and change how I approached the topic. Next week I hope to finish my globalization index and gather trafficking statistics for the nations I am studying. I’m also going to DC next week and will have a chance to meet with my external advisor and discuss how my project has been going so far. See you next week 🙂