Working Paper Ircres-CNR 01/2018                            
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The role of collective remittances in community development: the case of Hometown Associations

 Barbara Bonciani a b


a CNR-IRCRES, National Research Council, Research Institute on Sustainable Economic Growth, via Real Collegio 30, Moncalieri (TO) – Italy

b Department of Civilization and Form of Knowledge, University of Pisa, Via Paoli 15, Pisa – Italy


corresponding author: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



Remittances to developing countries exceeded $438 billions in 2015[1]. This amount is three times larger than overseas development assistance. Those flows have become an important source of money in these countries, playing a key role in the survival strategy of many people. Differently to personal remittance flows spent on household expenditures for consumption purposes, collective remittances are used for investment in social and productive projects in the villages or municipalities of origin. This paper explores the role of Hometown Associations (HTAs) as new actors in transnational funding strategies within collective remittance management. HTAs are involved in various community projects ranging from building of infrastructures to social benefits, with potential beneficial effects on the community of origin. In recent years, different subjects engaged in development issues have shown their interest in working in partnership with HTAs. The strength of the development programmes managed by HTAs derives by several factors, such as their knowledge of local needs and the capabilities of harmonizing local demand with support programmes. In spite of this, there are still some obstacles that need to be overcome to improve their full potential as agents of development. In this framework, both Governments and International organizations can play an important role in supporting HTAs to improve their organizational and technical capabilities.


Collective remittances, local development, Hometown associations, cultural identity, governance


JEL codes: J6, J15


DOI: 10.23760/2421-7158.2018.001.


How to Cite this Article

Bonciani Barbara, 2018. “The role of collective remittances in community development: the case of Hometown associations”, Working Paper CNR-IRCRES, anno 4, n. 1 pp. 2-13,


[1] World Bank (2016) Migration and Remittances Factbook.









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