Perspectives on Migration

Faculty: Sofi Matheu, MSc


Project Objectives
  • To understand the causes of migration in Acatenango.
  • To learn about the cooperative model of Buena Tierra.
  • To learn the good practices and lessons that Buena Tierra has as a cooperative and social enterprise.
  • To investigate the role of NGOs in creating improved occupational outcomes in Guatemala through educational, economic, and health-related programs
  • To position migration within human rights and social and occupational justice frameworks
Project Activities

The Perspectives on Migration Project Group will consider How to Engage with Rootedness through Coffee? 

The site of this project will be Buena Tierra, a coffee Farm Cooperative and Social enterprise which is looking to “develop a value chain project to increase the income generation and to support coffee farmers of Mayan families in Acatenango, Chimaltenango, Guatemala.

The Perspectives on Migration Project Group will work with a Guatemalan partner organization to explore the ongoing challenges of push and pull factors of migration and consider strategies for educational and occupational reconstruction.

Through participant observation, in-depth interview, archival research, and focus groups, we will create a case study about the different interactions that Buena Tierra has done to achieve their objectives as a social enterprise and a cooperative. We will map the actors who are involved in the process and understand the social dynamics that are around this cooperative.

Key competencies gained will include: instrument development, in-depth interviewing, ethnographic observation, qualitative data analysis, video and executive report writing. Readings and group discussions will explore the role of NGOs, development programs, and technical assistance in capacity- building, program sustainability, and priority-setting in global public health.

NOTE: Students’ willingness to contribute to the report in the 2-4 weeks following the field school end date is requested, in order to complete the writing, editing, and/or posting of the report.