Labour migrants' decision making in the process of adapting to the Norwegian society
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The principal aim of this thesis is to uncover what factors contribute to labour migrants’ decisions of settling, or not settling, in their new country, and reveal what factors influence positively or negatively to the adaptation process in their host environment. It involves all the three levels of micro, meso and macro, however, it is particularly concerned with the work environment and the individual’s decision making process. Young Yun Kim’s theory on cross-cultural adaptation has served as a basis for this research, and it is carried out in the Stavanger area, interviewing labour migrants in both the high skill and low skill sectors. The findings indicate that age/generation, personality, and the search for fulfilling careers are some factors that contribute negatively or positively to the decision of settling/living long term in the country. Moreover, personal interests such as sport and outdoor life may contribute to a positive adaptation process, as well as an ability to establish and maintain a personal network. This is where the international community in Stavanger plays an important role, serving both as a buffer between the migrant and the Norwegian society, and providing important support functions for newly arrived as well as for foreigners that have lived in Stavanger a while. Keeping in mind the nation’s continuous need for foreign workers in the future, this research may contribute to a better understanding of the interplay between the migrant, the work environment and the society, and can thereby be a resource in facilitating for migrant workers settling long term in the country.
Master's thesis in Migration and intercultural relations