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Cultural participation and extra disability and health costs of Syrian migrants in Turkey

Elefherios Giovanis (Department of International Trade and Business, Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences, Izmir Bakircay University, Izmir, Turkey)

International Journal of Migration, Health and Social Care

ISSN: 1747-9894

Article publication date: 6 February 2023

Issue publication date: 16 March 2023




The effects of disability are well recognised by the social security systems worldwide. This study aims to examine the disability and health-related costs of Syrian migrants in Turkey using the standard of living (SoL) approach.


The empirical analysis relies on primary data collected from 1,067 Syrian migrants in Turkey, and the author applies the ordered Probit model. The SoL is operationalized by frequency of attendance to a Turkish theatrical play or movie, inviting Turkish friends for food and attending a theatrical play or movie with Turkish friends.


The findings show that health problems and disability are negatively related to the frequency of participation in socio-cultural activities. Moreover, employed, wealthier and educated Syrian migrants participate more frequently in the social and cultural activities explored.

Practical implications

The results show that the costs range between 9% and 38%, which translates in monetary values between 3,700 and 10,700 Turkish Liras (TL) per annum or between US$530 and US$1,530 expressed in 2020 values. These findings highlight the significant cost and burden that disability and health problems may put in migrant households.

Social implications

Policies encouraging immigrants to participate in socio-cultural events, particularly those with disabilities and health issues, may promote their integration into the host society’s social and cultural values. Furthermore, policies improving employment opportunities, income and educational attainment of Syrian migrants may enhance their participation in socio-cultural activities.


To the best of the author’s knowledge, this is the first study exploring the disability and health costs of migrants related to integration and participation in cultural activities.



Giovanis, E. (2023), "Cultural participation and extra disability and health costs of Syrian migrants in Turkey", International Journal of Migration, Health and Social Care, Vol. 19 No. 1, pp. 58-75.



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