The historical presence of Indian communities in Spain, which began in the mid-19th century with the establishment of Sindhi merchants in the Canary Islands, has progressively grown in the 21st century with the arrival of new immigration flows, mainly from the Punjab, and of multidisciplinary professionals in recent years. The Spanish community in India, historically linked to religious missionaries, has increased in recent decades with expatriates from Spanish companies and professionals from the third sector. Bilateral civil society is completed by a series of bilateral entities, such as the Institute of Indology, Casa de la India, the Spanish Association for Interdisciplinary India Studies, the Indo-Spanish Chamber of Commerce or the Spain-India Council Foundation. These are joined by other entities that, without having a bilateral pursuit, do have a significant impact on our bilateral relations. The historical gap in our exchanges, coupled with a discontinuous presence in the media, makes it difficult to increase our knowledge and improve our bilateral image.
In this working document we analyze the Indian diaspora in Spain; the main groups that make up the Spanish community in India; the associations of the Indian community in Spain and their impact on mutual knowledge; the network of Indo-Spanish entities that make up the bilateral civil society; the fabric of Indo-Spanish experts and professionals that act as vectors of mutual knowledge; and mutual knowledge through the media, think tanks and social networks.