Recent Spanish emigration in Mexico: a new story to tell or the usual labour migration?

Cristóbal Mendoza Pérez, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana-Iztapalapa (Ciudad de México)
Anna Ortiz Guitart, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

Using qualitative information, this paper studies the labour experiences of a group of Spanish migrants in Mexico City, and identifies two types of migrants: TNCs transferees and 'migrants in the middle'. This somehow challenges assumptions about skilled workers, by showing the multiple work trajectories and experiences of these educated workers. The article also stresses that the labour mobility of those in the middle is more horizontal and less conventional than the more typical career-path mobility of transferees. Furthermore, it is argued that labour mobility is not only related to educational background or performance in Mexico’s labour markets, but also to non-economic reasons. Of special interest for this study are relations at the workplace as they represent 'contact zone' where 'difference' is encountered and negotiated. For the interviewed Spaniards, workplace relations are substantially different from Spain. This causes tension and problems which affect their intentions to remain in Mexico.

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Presented in Session 89: European Emigration