New books by the members of the hub


Attraction and Retention Reasons for International Retirement Migration. The Case of Swedish Citizens in Portugal and in Spain by Sten Engdahl. 2021.

This study attempts to contribute to the existing literature on International Retirement Migration. First, it simultaneously analyses the reasons for attracting and the reasons for retaining International Retired Migrants (IRM) in a country. Second, it devises an empirically driven structure of attraction and retention reasons. Third, it distinguishes between needs – Personal Requisites – and experiences – Experienced Context – of IRM in the host country. Fourth, the study analyses how variables of Personal Requisites and Experienced Context affect the anticipated timeframe for IRM to remain in the host country. Finally, the study identifies country-specific issues of Swedish IRM in Portugal and Spain. Data was collected in Portugal and Spain through the use of an internet-based instrument. A sample of 219 Swedish IRM in Portugal and 356 in Spain was obtained and the results were analysed through Partial Least Squares (PLS). The most important attraction reasons are a better quality of life, better climate, safety, and healthcare. The results are similar for retention reasons, with the addition of gastronomy, flight connections, and health benefits. The empirically driven structure of reasons consists of four factors; Senior Needs, Social Life, Access to Home Country, and Contacts in Host Country. The Timeframe to Remain in Portugal is directly affected by Tax Incentives, Senior Housing, and Sociocultural Adaptation. In Spain, Senior Needs, Senior Housing, and Healthcare directly affect the Timeframe to Remain. In both countries, Senior Housing mediates between Personal Requisites variables and Timeframe to Remain. Healthcare is also a mediator in Spain. Theoretical contributions and practical applications for designing strategies to attract and retain IRM are discussed.


The Political Agency of British Migrants: Brexit and Belonging by Fiona Ferbrache and Jeremy MacClancy. 2021.

This book offers a comparative analysis of the political agency of British migrants in Spain and France and explores how they struggle for a sense of belonging in the wake of Brexit.

With the UK’s departure from the European Union (EU), Britons are set to lose EU citizenship as their political rights are redefined. This book examines the impacts this is having on Britons living in two EU countries. It moves beyond the political agency of underprivileged migrants to demonstrate that those who are relatively well-off also have political subjectivities: they can enter the political fray if their fundamental values or key interests are challenged. This book is based on ethnographic inquiry into the political agency of Britons in the Spanish Province of Alicante and south-west France in the twenty-first century. Themes such as Britons becoming elected as local councillors in their countries of residence, migrants’ reactions to Brexit, organisation of anti-Brexit campaigners, and claims for residency and citizenship are examined. The book foregrounds the contemporary practice theory built on the work of Pierre Bourdieu, as well as Engin Isin’s approach to enacting citizenship, to provide empirical insights into the political participation of Britons. It does so be demonstrating how the elected councillors stood against gross moral inequity and fought for a sense of local belonging; how campaigners emoted digitally in reaction to Brexit; and how some migrants, keen to remain without worry, learnt both to navigate and to contest the policy and practice of national bureaucracies.

This book makes a first-ever contribution to the fields of anthropology and geography in the study of impacts of Brexit on British migrants within Europe. It is also the first study into lifestyle migrants as political agents.


Tourism Employment in Nordic Countries: Trends, Practices, Opportunities by Andreas Walmsley, Kajsa Åberg, Petra Blinnikka and Gunnar Thór Jóhannesson. 2020.

Viewed through a politico-economic lens, Nordic countries share what is often referred to as the ‘Nordic model’, characterised by a comprehensive welfare state; higher spending on childcare; more equitable income distribution; and lifelong-learning policies. This edited collection is relevant for lifestyle migration scholars with an interest in tourism employment in general and its connections with the tourism-migration nexus. The book considers these contexts to explore the complex nature of tourism employment, thereby providing insights into the dynamic nature, characteristics, and meaning of work in tourism.

Contributors combine explorations of the impact of policy on tourism employment with a more traditional human resources management approach focusing on employment issues from an organizational perspective, such as job satisfaction, training, and retention. In particular, chapters 5, 12, 15, 17 and 19 may be relevant for lifestyle migration studies. These texts shed invigorating lights on ‘crafts as employment’, ‘seasonal workers’, ‘downshifting rural tourism lifestyle migrant entrepreneurs’, ‘national tourism policy’, and ‘migrants working in hospitality industries’ respectively. The final chapter offers a wrap up looking into existing and upcoming trends, practices and opportunities, including ways in which new residents may provide important social functions to communities (in receiving areas).

The texts point to opportunities as well as challenges relating to issues such as the notion of ‘decent work’, the role and contribution of migrant workers, and more broadly, the varying policy objectives embedded within the Nordic welfare model. Offering a detailed, multi-faceted analysis of tourism employment, this book is a valuable resource for students, researchers and practitioners interested in tourism employment in the region.


Recent Irish and British Migration to Berlin – A Case of Lifestyle Migration by Melanie Neumann. 2020. 

This book offers a detailed insight into the Irish and British communities in Berlin. It examines the causes and effects of these migration flows: What motivates the Irish and British to come to Berlin? How do they contribute to the city’s cultural life and labour market? To what extent do the migrants feel they belong in the host society? In what way do they contribute to inequality and exclusion and to what extent are they themselves caught up in it? What role does language play – can English be seen as a form of cultural capital or does it lead to discrimination? What is the significance of German? Additionally, the impact of Brexit on Britons in the sample as well as the recovery of the Irish economy on the Irish respondents is highlighted. The presented research furthermore tests whether the recent increase in these two migration flows can be connected to lifestyle migration. At the same time, the lifestyle migration concept itself is subjected to critical scrutiny regarding its general value to migration research. Therefore, this monograph does not only contribute to the development of both lifestyle migration and migration research in general, but further gives a practical insight into a sample group of privileged migrants in a European capital.


Migration et soutien familial: le cas des gays indonésiens à Paris by Adihartono Wisnu. 2020. 

Il est indéniable que la violence et le harcèlement sont des problèmes qui affectent toutes les formes de communautés homosexuelles à travers le monde. En tant qu’individus, les homosexuels ne sont toujours pas acceptés comme des citoyens à part entière. De là est né le terme « d’homophobie » qui vise toutes les attitudes négatives à l’égard des homosexuels telle par exemple la discrimination directe et indirecte visant toute personne dont l’apparence ou le comportement ne se conforme pas aux stéréotypes dominants de la masculinité ou de la féminité. Nous voyons dans cette recherche qu’il y a des milliers d’années, l’Indonésie donne la permission à l’existence d’homosexuels, mais désormais l’Indonésie rejette leur existence. Cette recherche s’intéresse à la migration et le soutien familial des gays Indonésiens à Paris. Elle repose sur une fait sociale qu’il y a des gays Indonésiens qui ont migré à Paris pour des raisons diverses et leurs relations avec la famille en Indonésie dans le cadre du soutien familial.

Dipping in to the North: Living, Working and Traveling in Sparsely Populated Areas by Linda Lundmark, Dean Bradley Carson and Marco Eimermann (eds.) 2020.

This book describes and explains how changing mobility and migration is affecting the social, economic, cultural, and environmental characteristics of the northern sparsely populated areas of Sweden (and places like it). It examines who lives in, works in, and visits the north, how and why this has changed over time, and what those changes mean for how the north might develop in the future. The book draws upon the expertise and knowledge of a range of social scientists who have been researching mobility issues in the north for the past two decades or more, and presents their insights in a language and format that is accessible to government, community and industry stakeholders. The book is structured around the three key mobilities themes – i) who lives in, ii) who works in, and iii) who visits the sparsely populated north. The overlaps between the themes are explored in introductory and concluding sections.

Momentous Mobilities: Anthropological Musings on the Meanings of Travel by Noel B. Salazar. 2020.

Grounded in scholarly analysis and personal reflection, and drawing on a multi-sited and multi-method research design, Momentous Mobilities disentangles the meanings attached to temporary travels and stays abroad and offers empirical evidence as well as novel theoretical arguments to develop an anthropology of mobility. Both focusing specifically on how various societies and cultures imagine and value boundary-crossing mobilities “elsewhere” and drawing heavily on his own European lifeworld, the author examines momentous travels abroad in the context of education, work, and spiritual quests and the search for a better quality of life.

Gringolandia. Lifestyle Migration under Late Capitalism by Matthew Hayes. 2018.

Even as the “migration crisis” from the Global South to the Global North rages on, another, lower-key and yet important migration has been gathering pace in recent years—that of mostly white, middle-class people moving in the opposite direction. Gringolandia is that rare book to consider this phenomenon in all its complexity. Matthew Hayes focuses on North Americans relocating to Cuenca, Ecuador, the country’s third-largest city and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Many began relocating there after the 2008 economic crisis. Most are self-professed “economic refugees” who sought offshore retirement, affordable medical care, and/or a lower–cost location. Others, however, sought adventure marked by relocation to an unfamiliar cultural environment and to experience personal growth through travel, illustrative of contemporary cultures of aging. These life projects are often motivated by a desire to escape economic and political conditions in North America.Regardless of their individual motivations, Hayes argues, such North–South migrants remain embedded in unequal and unfair global social relations. He explores the repercussions on the host country—from rising prices for land and rent to the reproduction of colonial patterns of domination and subordination. In Ecuador, heritage preservation and tourism development reflect the interests and culture of European-descendent landowning elites, who have most to benefit from the new North–South migration. In the process, they participate in transnational gentrification that marginalizes popular traditions and nonwhite mestizo and indigenous informal workers. The contrast between the migration experiences of North Americans in Ecuador and those of Ecuadorians or others from such regions of the Global South in North America and Europe demonstrates that, in fact, what we face is not so much a global “migration crisis” but a crisis of global social justice.

Book cover: Practicing the good lifePractising the Good Life. Lifestyle Migration in Practices by Kate Torkington, Inês David and João Sardinha (eds.).
This edited collection adds to the growing body of research on lifestyle migration with empirically grounded explorations focusing on a wide range of practices involved in living ‘the good life’. The volume brings together a variety of socio-geographical contexts – from Swedish ‘lifestyle movers’ in Malta, retired Britons and Germans in Spain, and seekers of the ‘rural idyll’ in the Iberian Peninsula, to expats in Nepal, North Americans in Ecuador and ‘utopian’ lifestyle migrants in Patagonia – to provide a broad spectrum of studies that provide insights into how the practices of lifestyle migration are (re-)produced and performed. Adopting a variety of methodological approaches, the contributions also reflect the interdisciplinary nature of current research into migration, with groundings in sociology, anthropology, human geography, cultural studies and linguistics.
Table of contents


Book cover: Global Amenity MigrationGlobal Amenity Migration: Transforming Rural Culture, Economy and Landscape by Laurence A.G. Moss and Romella S. Glorioso (eds.).

In Global Amenity Migration, 34 scholars and practitioners examine the increasing movement of people to “rural” places rich in natural and cultural amenities seeking to improve their quality of life. Socio-cultural, environmental and economic opportunities and issues brought by this powerful change agent are identified and explained, as well as stakeholdersʼ responses. Important findings are provided about the larger patterns of amenity-led change and development, along with specific analyses of a selection of high-amenity places in the Americas, Europe, Africa and Asia. Strategic recommendations are also proposed for planning and managing this in-migration and its effects. Public and private researchers, decision-makers, planners, and managers will find Global Amenity Migration of significant theoretical and practical value. The book will also be of considerable interest to rural residents, or those considering moving to our rapidly transitioning rural small towns and surrounding countryside, at home or abroad.


Opting for Elsewhere: Lifestyle Migration in the American Middle Class by Brian A. Hoey.

“Do you get told what the good life is, or do you figure it out for yourself?” This is the central question of Opting for Elsewhere, as the reader encounters stories of people who chose relocation as a way of redefining themselves and reordering work, family, and personal priorities. This is a book about the impulse to start over. Whether downshifting from stressful careers or being downsized from jobs lost in a surge of economic restructuring, lifestyle migrants seek refuge in places that seem to resonate with an idealized, potential self. Choosing the “option of elsewhere” and moving as a means of remaking self through sheer force of will are basic facets of American character, forged in its history as a developing nation of immigrants with a seemingly ever-expanding frontier. Building off years of interviews and research in the Midwest, including areas of Michigan, Brian Hoey provides an evocative illustration of the ways these sweeping changes impact people and the communities where they live and work as well as how both react–devising strategies for either coping with or challenging the status quo. This portrait of starting over in the heartland of America compels the reader to ask where we are going next as an emerging postindustrial society.


Understanding Lifestyle Migration. Theoretical Approaches to Migration and the Quest for a Better Way of Life by Michaela Benson & Nick Osbaldiston (eds.)

Understanding Lifestyle Migration is an attempt to provide theoretical commentary on lifestyle migration itself. While there has been much literature on the subject, this has been mostly applied seeking to provide detailed ethnographic accounts that provide some links back to social theory. What we seek to do in this collection is bring together a host of lifestyle migration scholars to begin and continue a debate on how we are best to understand the movement. We set this tone in our very first chapter arguing that in the Future Directions of lifestyle migration literature there needs to be a more nuanced account of its beginnings and most importantly, reflections that are not too heavily skewed towards theories of individualism. The arguments contained in the book seek to develop this further by arguing that privilege, status, cultural conditions and other forms of hard and soft structures inevitably play a role in the motivation and lived experience of lifestyle migration. Contained in this volume are also more nuanced discussions using different forms of theoretical lens such as counter-urbanisation, classical social theory and mobilities. The point of the volume is certainly not to settle the debate on how best to make sense of this phenomenon. Rather it is to begin to open these back up pushing beyond the easy ready made explanations to dig deeper into the phenomenon’s cultural, historical and contemporary manifestations and thus provide a more holistic account of what is a phenomenon that is growing in importance.


Contested Spatialities, Lifestyle Migration and Residential Tourism by Michael Janoschka & Heiko Haas (eds.)

The book is an exciting compilation of essays focusing on the topic of lifestyle migration and its impacts in various destinations worldwide which have not been covered extensively in the corresponding research so far like, for example, Finland, Mexico, South Africa, Malaysia, Chile and Morocco, to name just a few. By uniting contributions from Geographers, Anthropologists, Political Scientists and Sociologists (many of them Hub members) rooted in different research methodologies and approaches – from second-home tourism and amenity migration to lifestyle migration and residential tourism – the book represents the various existing research traditions in lifestyle and leisure oriented mobilities. A particular focus is put on the more problematic and conflictive dimensions in lifestyle migrations such as gender, territorial dispossession, linguistic power, economic circumstances, marginality and social exclusion, while another section of the book is concerned with conceptual issues.


Nordic Seniors on the Move. Mobility and Migration in Later Life by Anne Leonora Blaakilde & Gabriella Nilsson.

This anthology is about seniors on the move. In seven chapters, Nordic researchers from various disciplines, by means of ethnographic methods, attempt to comprehend the phenomenon of Nordic seniors who move to leisure areas in their own or in other countries.
It is argued in this book that the fact that more people live longer, with better health, leads to a multiplicity of ways of growing old. As a result of this, paradoxes and polarities might arise; seniors cope with their lives all along the scale between fit and frail, weak and wealthy, poor and powerful, conservative, dynamic and unpredictable. This is valid for the Nordic seniors on the move as well. Moving may entail great economic dilemmas and challenges for individuals, social networks, and nation states. As shown here, mobility and migration have implications for identities, traditions, feelings of belonging, family relationships and friendships, health, images of old age, societal planning and policies, and even for religious attachment.
This book contributes to the international body of literature about later life migration, while representing experiences from a Nordic perspective. The book is finalised by a chapter including an international perspective of retirement migration by the architect Deane Simpson, who has studied and worked with gerotopias around the world.


Neoliberal Governance and International Medical Travel in Malaysia by Meghann Ormond.

International medical travel (IMT), people crossing national borders in the pursuit of healthcare, has become a growing phenomenon. With many of the countries currently being promoted as IMT destinations located in the ‘developing’ world, IMT poses a significant challenge to popular assumptions about who provides and receives care since it inverses and diversifies presumed directionalities of care.

This book analyses the development of international medical travel in Malaysia, by looking at the benefits and challenges of providing health care to non-Malaysians. It challenges embedded assumptions about the sources, directions and political value of care. The author situates the Malaysian case study material at the fruitful cross-section of a range of literatures on transnational mobility, hospitality, therapeutic landscapes and medical diplomacy to examine their roles in the construction of national identity. The book thus contributes to wider debates that have emerged around the changing character of global health governance, and is of use to students and scholars of Southeast Asian Studies as well as Politics and Health and Social Care.

International Migration & Social Theory by Karen O’Reilly.

In this book, Karen O’Reilly introduces the key theories and concepts that have been used to understand migration, and she examines how they have been used to explain various different migrations around the world.  The book then draws on structuration and practice theories to tell practice stories about: British Migration to Spain; Mexican Labour Migration to the US; Filipina Domestic Labour Migration to Hong Kong; and Refugee Children in the UK.


Migration im Alter: Lebenswelt, Identität und Kultur deutscher Ruhesitzwanderer in Spanien by Melanie Hühn,

For more and more German retirees, migration with age constitutes a welcome opportunity to make their retirement years as active and independent as possible. Because of its climate, Spain is one of the most popular destinations for such migrants.

Several thousand German retirees have found a new place of residence in the municipality of Torrox in Andalusia. In this extraordinary place, the lifeworld of the retreat migrants has been studied with ethnographic methods. Here it can be shown that most of the retirees are not classical migrants who emigrate to a certain place; instead, they are part of a group of multi-local people that create a home in two places – one of them in Germany and one of them in Spain. This special migration is subject to particular motivations; it accomplishes specific functions; and it produces strategies that enable everyday life in several places. In this book, the concept of ›Successful Ageing‹ is shown to characterise their lifestyle and trans-culturalise the lifeworld of the German retirees in an intriguing way.

Seeking authenticity in Place, Culture and the Self. The Great urban Escape by Nick Osbaldiston.

This book explores the lifestyle migration movement known as ‘seachange’ in Australia. Using a Durkheimian framework developed by Yale Cultural Sociologist Phil Smith, I explore the driving motivations and narratives which attract lifestyle migrants to places of high environmental and cultural amenity. Through this platform, I set up the narratives that are embedded in these places which impact on people’s sense of self. However, it is clear that while there are environmental degradation issues, these founding narratives which attract people are ironically being challenged by in-migration period. The book promotes the question of authenticity as an underpinning concept for lifestyle migration and is published within the Palgrave Macmillan series on Cultural Sociology

‘In this pioneering book, Osbaldiston sheds light on the cultural phenomenon of seachange, the migration of urbanites in search of meaning. Through the lens of cultural sociology, he presents a compelling and theoretically rigorous argument for how the construction of authentic places by planners, promoters, and seachangers is thoroughly and inextricably entangled with a sense of the authentic self. The result is unmatched, with Osbaldiston narrative a nuanced and thoroughly engaging account of the impact of seachange on places and on individuals’ Michaela Benson – author of the British in Rural France.

La transmigración placentera. Movilidad de Estadounidenses a México. Omar Lizárraga Morales (2012).

In this book, we describe and compare the American residential mobility in two of the main destinations in northwest of Mexico: Mazatlan, Sinaloa and Cabo San Lucas, Baja California Sur. In this study, we analyzed their transnational practices and social networks as well as the current status of this migration and its foreseeable future. The study also discusses the socio-economic and environmental impacts generated in these two places.



The British in rural France by Michaela Benson.

Drawing on my research among the British residents of the Lot, a rural department in southwest France, my book explores the role that the quest for a better way of life plays in the lives of these lifestyle migrants, from the decision to migrate through to their actions and rhetoric about life following migration. While previous studies (Buller and Hoggart 1994; Barou and Prado 1995) stressed the historical and cultural context behind migration, I emphasize how this impacts not only on expectations for life following migration but also on the lived experiences of life in the Lot. The insights into the migrants’ lives reveal not only how the migrants live in the Lot, but how they project their ideas about themselves through their everyday practices and their uncertainty about their position within the local communities that they desire to become a part of. It appears that it is not only that their migration emerges out a middle-class desire for rural living, transposed from rural Britain onto rural France (Buller and Hoggart 1994), but it is also the case that experiences of life in rural France, and indeed, the migrants’ actions within the destination are framed and shaped by middle-class value systems and practices. In this rendering, the continuing quest for a better way is a way in which the migrants lay claim to the distinctiveness of their lives, thus revealing the pervading influence of their (British) middle class status.

‘This wonderfully evocative ethnography is a detailed, scholarly, important, and timely contribution to migration studies, as well as to interdisciplinary debates around landscape, culture, class, and the imagination. The British in France are statistically difficult to locate, but Benson renders their lives visible through the use of imagery, employing intricate details and rich descriptions to create a sensory experience for the reader.’ Karen O’Reilly, Professor of Sociology at Loughborough University

Lifestyle Migration. Expectations, Aspirations and Experiences

Co-edited by hub members Michaela Benson and Karen O’Reilly, this is the first edited collection on Lifestyle Migration. In addition to an introduction that presents an analytical and conceptual framework for understanding this social phenomenon, the volume contains contributions from Mari Korpela, Brian Hoey, Catherine Trundle, Per Gustafson, Maria Casado Diaz, Karen O’Reilly, Michaela Benson, Ozlem Nudrali and Jacqueline Waldren.


Residential Tourism. (De)Constructing Paradise

This book about residential tourism development in Boquete, Panama, was authored by hub member Mason McWatters. It provides an insight into the ways that both residential tourist incomers and local social actors conceive of their environment and calls for a renewed emphasis on how these developments are experienced on a local level.