Saturday, September 10, 2011

Are You "Team Scotland"?

The Scottish Diaspora and Diaspora Strategy: Insights and Lessons from Ireland, a 2009 report from the Scottish Government, pondered how to encourage members of the Diaspora to play for "Team Scotland."

Two reports published in 2010, further Team Scotland's cause.  Analysis Report of Homecoming Scotland 2009 Diaspora Events summarizes the impact and findings of Homecoming 2009. Key themes included Communication with the Diaspora; Education and Promotion of Scots regarding the importance of Scots throughout the world and that connections with the Diaspora is a good thing; and Identity of the Scots who left, which usually became a hybrid one and that member of the Diaspora do celebrate their Scottish culture, a fact not often recognized by those in Scotland. The event achieved the objectives set forth by the Scottish Government and most attendees were pleased as well.

Diaspora Engagement Plan - Reaching Out to Scotland's International Family sets out in a mere six pages the Scottish Government's plans for "harnessing the power of Scotland's Diaspora." Much of this report summarized the three 2009 reports particularly regarding the many Diaspora types. The paper lists the benefits for Scotland and the Diaspora. The Scottish Government pledges to build on the success of previous endeavors like, VisitScotland and to develop social media tools. The creation of the Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies at the University of Edinburgh is highlighted. Page five lists many websites for readers who wish additional information; contributors to the Diaspora Engagement Plan are listed on page six.

As the authors themselves state, their plan is ambitious. It seems to me though, if you want to play for Team Scotland you will have to ask; Team Scotland seems unlikely to find you. So visit the Official Gateway to Scotland at (or follow them @AboutScotland or like them on Facebook) to find out about your place on the team. also suggests these sites: Ancestral Scotland, Scotland's History and Scotland Exchange, among others.

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