Volume 5 Issue 6 December 2007 Applied Research Note 2

Small Island Economic Strategies: Aid-Remittance versus Tourism Dependence

by Katherine McSorley (Aon Risk Services), & Jerome L. McElroy (Saint Mary’s College)

The Migrant/Remittances and Aid/Bureaucracy (MIRAB) model developed by Bertram and Watters (1985) based on remittances and aid has dominated the small island economy literature. Recently, two challenges have surfaced: the People (immigration), Resources, Overseas Management (Diplomacy), Finance and Transport (PROFIT) formulation of Baldacchino (2006) emphasizing the ‘resourcefulness of jurisdiction’ and the Small Island Tourist Economies (SITE) model (McElroy, 2006) stressing the role of tourism. To date, there has been no comparative assessment of these different island models. This article partially addresses this gap by constructing comprehensive profiles across 24 variables for two small-island subgroups: 12 MIRAB and 17 SITE. Results indicate SITE islands exhibit a considerably more developed profile than their MIRAB counterparts.

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