Tool to rationalize hometown investment by overseas Filipinos eyed

Alvin Ang and Jeremaiah Opiniano

During the GDNet Awards and Medals Finalists Presentation Skills Training that took place on the 11-12 January, participants were asked to write a blog to capture the key issues underpinning their work.

We feature here a blog written by Alvin Ang and Jeremaiah Opiniano, from the University of Santo Tomas Research Cluster on Culture, Education and Social Issues in the Philippines, who were last night declared the winner of the Japanese Award for Outstanding Research on Development (ORD).

Deducing how to best use one’s money may need Rene Descartes’ inspiration.

And to solve the mystery of how overseas Filipinos from rural birthplaces can invest their money, two University of Santo Tomas professors based in Manila are banking on a tool whose acronym sounds like the 17th century philosopher’s surname.

The Remittance Investment Climate Analysis in Rural Hometowns (RICART) tool will rationalize —like Descartes—how investing in rural hometowns can take place.

The Philippines is overflowing with billion-dollar remittances, but Ang and Opiniano thinks the country has yet to determine how such money will be used for local development.

For Filipinos abroad who empathize with their rural hometowns, and who naturally invest there, “are disconnected with their birthplaces,” Ang said.

“They [overseas Filipinos] don’t have information where best to park their money,” adds Ang.

RICART’s rationalizing of the hometown investment puzzle will be done through documenting the hometown’s available resources, and surveying how overseas Filipinos and their families from those hometowns have been using their earnings.

Then RICART will determine if overseas Filipinos will: a) park their money or not; b) determine where interested investors will place their money; and c) enumerate why investors will not invest back home.

Ang and Opiniano hope to pilot RICART in two fourth-class municipalities: Magarao in Camarines Sur province (south of Manila), and Maribojoc in Bohol province (in central Philippines).

The Philippines’ has over-8.5 million migrants overseas who have sent  more than US$150 billion home over the last 35 years.

Ang and Opiniano are finalists in a global research contest organized by Global Development Network (GDN).

The RICART proposal is among three finalists for the Japanese Award for Outstanding Research in Development, one of three annual contests that GDN holds back-to-back with its annual Global Development Conference.


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2 Responses to Tool to rationalize hometown investment by overseas Filipinos eyed

  1. Pingback: UST Professors recognized by PNoy at GDN Conference | The Journalism Post

  2. Pingback: What does it take for researchers to be heard: Research competitions | GDNet Blog

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