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Title: Labour migration, remittances and development in the Myanmar-Singapore corridor
Author: Ma, Alex Khai Sun
ISNI:       0000 0004 8500 4843
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2019
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This thesis explores the impacts of labour migration on development in Myanmar. The central ambition of this thesis is to challenge existing work on the 'migration-development nexus' by analysing the context-specific factors that structure and effect particular 'outcomes' of migration. In particular, I pay attention to the role of migration pathways, intermediaries, household structures, and migration policy in producing particular types of migrants. To do this, I adopted a 'follow the people' and 'follow the thing' methodology, which relied on survey (n=459) and interview (n=71) data. Both involved Burmese migrant workers across the income spectrum, but interviews were also conducted with key stakeholders, such as remittance recipients in Yangon, Myanmar, employment agents, multilateral organisations, and non- governmental organisations. This multi-sited methodology allowed me to track migratory and remittance-sending practices across space, grounding findings in verbal reconstructions of pre- migration livelihoods, everyday practices of migrants in Singapore, and finally through remittances back to the household in Myanmar. Using Bourdieu's theory of practice to dissect migrant and household behavioural drivers, this thesis demonstrates how the relationship between migration and development is not straightforward but results from dynamic livelihood strategies and demands. Issues around employment rights in Singapore, social protection in Myanmar, household cultures of filial piety, and communal structures of risk-sharing and donation are particularly salient. I found that migration and remittances do have a positive effect on households, but they fail to address underlying livelihood constraints. In turn, this thesis contributes to an emergent literature on migration, precarity and temporality.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available