Globalization, Transnationalism, and Intersecting Geographies of Power: The Case of the Consejo Consultivo del Instituto de los Mexicanos en el Exterior (CC" IME): A Study in Progress

The Consejo Consultivo del Instituto de los Mexicanos en el Exterior (CC-IME) is a somewhat unusual transnational organization established and funded by the Mexican government in 2003 as a means of maintaining contact with and serving the Mexican diaspora of almost 12 million in the United States and Canada. The 56 Mexican consulates in the United States and Canada conduct elections (or sometimes appoint) around 120 representatives for three-year terms to serve as an advisory council to represent the needs of the Mexican diaspora before the Mexican government and to strengthen the ties (especially economic and political ties) between the Mexican diaspora in Canada and the United States and the government of Mexico. Previous studies have described the history, purpose, and some of the programs initiated by the Mexican Foreign Ministry (SRE) and the CC-IME. The story of the CC-IME, however, is more than can be understood from the perspective of any one state. As a transnational organization at a particular time in history, its operation reflects the perspectives of a host of different entities. Using qualitative research methods and participant observation, this ongoing study employs Mahler and Pessar's geographies of power framework to identify and explore various power hierarchies and special political characteristics of CC-IME from a variety of perspectives.