I attended the Global Shapers Ottawa meeting last week, mostly out of my curious about UNESCO’s involvement in local communities. Global Shapers, is a side project to World Economic Forum that aims at bringing the ideas and suggestions of local thinkers with international counterparts through representing and negotiating in global forums. The objective of the meeting was voting on the most important issues of out contemporary society. I took this as an opportunity for to emphasize on mobility (what one might refer to as nomadism according to Urry’s New Mobilities’ Paradigm) as one of the most ironically neglected aspects of human life.
A quick skim of the human history, portrays mobility an essence of human life almost next to breathing. The quickened access to vehicles and information about remote places has only advanced what has been known as “seeking resources and water” since before the establishment of history.Considering what we encounter on a day to day basis as refugee/forced migration phenomena, mobility of human beings in itself is not the subject of this dialectic. In the modern societies that we live under the regulations of nation states where mobility requires us to “qualify” before border crossing, mobility becomes a governance problematic. In a way overt objectivity to the “human behavior” of moving prevents us from believing or being face to face with phenomena that create movement: wars, bloodshed, famine, and climate change.
Sharing stories of land, motivation and practices has long been theorized as the ultimate way of cultural communication. Even for those who do not necessarily enjoy political career choices. But how a spectrum that is dominated by border security concerns can be bridged to story-telling? The answer, to my knowledge of international education (which is the focus of my doctorate degree and only of the many derivatives of human mobility is; that mobility is no more an “issue” and could re-introduced as a “life style”. This will create mobility to become a more accessible form, and its consequences a source for education. Lack or absence of local knowledge among intervention programs is the number one issue in critical development theory. One would think that the significant increase in the expansion of forms of mobilities (including knowledge and information) through the advancement of technologies, must have elided the remaining of ignorance.
Nomads, those on the move are carriers of a human capital the regulating bodies are seeking to attract. Yet, research proves that these people remain isolated to one level of another in their host societies. I have had the chance of bringing in my perspective as a local Farsi speaking political individual to many platforms. As an analyst I elaborated on the differences of the political stances that the Iranian society has with the majority of the international communities and the ways in which it gets reflected on social media. Within the political scope, this perspective allows me to trace certain systematic [downward] patterns that I have experienced or, simply have become familiar with through my political history. This type of involvement has introduced me to individuals from conflict and crucial zones of the world who do aspire to manifest some awakening in academia, governmental and non-governmental initiatives. But my work is only a tiny example of a proactive persuasion of ambitions for becoming a global representative and contributor to the world of policy and international relations.
Those coming from what we know as “harsh experiences” are teachers of “global politics”. Breaking the walls of local communities that seek awareness is in the hands of a differential system. A system that counts for each bit of data equaly; and allows those who carry information to engage in actions as much as locals do, regardless of their “status”.
I support this idea by quoting my interpretation of John Urry’s definition of the mobilities’ paradigm in his speech at the University of Lancaster in 2012. Human always seek connection. The risk and toll of losing the existing connections and creating new ones for those one the move is superior in defining sociological and economical studies of mobility. A “community” that relies on “diverse societies”, to build it upon knowledge is in an arms reach. In times where a surge of refugee population drives cyber rages of awareness about “people” on the move, refugees, forced migrants and expats are not only in need for optimization of their lives. They carry histories of lands they come from, more importantly, contemporary “feel” of where they have fled, or left. Teachings of mobility could be empowering for the both sides; as they merge into one another.