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Diasporas – communities which live outside, but maintain links with, their homelands – are getting larger, thicker and stronger. They are the human face of globalization. Diaspora consciousness is on the rise - diasporas are becoming more interested in their origins, and organizing themselves more effectively; homelands are revising their opinions of their diasporas as the stigma attached to emigration declines, and stepping up their engagement efforts; meanwhile, host countries are witnessing more assertive diasporic groups within their own national communities, worrying about fifth columns and foreign lobbies, and suffering outbreaks of ‘diasporaphobia’. This trend is the result of five factors, all of them connected with globalization: the growth in international migration; the revolution in transport and communications technology, which is quickening the pace of diasporas’ interactions with their homelands; a reaction against global homogenized culture, which is leading people to rethink their identities; the end of the Cold War, which increased the salience of ethnicity and nationalism and created new space in which diasporas can operate; and policy changes by national governments on issues such as dual citizenship and multiculturalism, which are enabling people to lead transnational lives. Diasporas such as those attaching to China, India, Russia and Mexico are already big, but they will continue to grow; the migration flows which feed them are likely to widen and quicken in the future.