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A life course approach to high-skilled migration: migrant biographies of Indians in the Netherlands and United Kingdom

22nd July 2011 2pm, University of Southampton 58/2097

Anu Kou, University of Groningen

Whereas a large body of literature concerns the economic macro-level contributions of highly skilled migrants, little is known about their micro-level behaviour that goes beyond the financial reasoning. We adopt a qualitative life course framework with a focus on the interdependencies of education, employment, household and migration trajectories to examine how highly skilled Indian migrants in the Netherlands and United Kingdom shape their life course. Our results draw from semi-structured biographic interviews and plotting of biographies as a projective technique. The preliminary findings suggest that timing of various life transitions and impact of linked lives play a major role in structuring the biographies of highly skilled Indian migrants. These qualitative results enable understanding the life course patterns that both constitute and are determined by high-skilled migration within the socio-economic and cultural context.

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