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Examining the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on international migrants' repatriation intention using structural equation modeling

Amanpreet Kaur (Punjab School of Economics, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, India)
Vikas Kumar (Indian Institute of Management, Amritsar, India)
Prabhjot Kaur (Punjab School of Economics, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, India)

International Journal of Social Economics

ISSN: 0306-8293

Article publication date: 5 September 2022

Issue publication date: 2 January 2023

99

Abstract

Purpose

COVID-19 pandemic has shattered the economic systems all around the world while creating numerous problems which were faced by all, especially international migrants. The present study offers a qualitative and quantitative perspective on the distress of international migrants and their repatriation intention during the pandemic period.

Design/methodology/approach

In-depth semi-structured interviews of 30 respondents belonging to five host nations, Australia, the USA, the UK, New Zealand and Canada, revealed diverse issues. Based on qualitative study findings and past literature, 22 purposeful statements about six constructs – financial issues, social issues, mobility constraints, psychological problems, healthcare issues, and repatriation intentions – were developed. These statements were measured on a seven-point Likert scale and shared online with international migrants from India residing in the host nations. Data collected from 496 international migrants from October 2020 to July 2021 were used to analyze the influence of various determinants on the repatriation intentions by partial least square-structural equation modeling using SmartPLS software.

Findings

The analysis results revealed that the role of financial, social, mobility, psychological and healthcare issues was significant in strengthening the repatriation intentions of the migrants. There is a need to create job opportunities, retrain laid-off workers and formulate migrant inclusive policies.

Originality/value

Although some studies have highlighted a few problems faced by international migrants, their impact on repatriation intentions has not been studied yet. The present study fills this gap and analyzes the repatriation intention of international migrants in light of different problems they faced during the pandemic.

Peer review

The peer review history for this article is available at: https://publons.com/publon/10.1108/IJSE-04-2022-0233.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

Funding: The author(s) received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.

Citation

Kaur, A., Kumar, V. and Kaur, P. (2023), "Examining the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on international migrants' repatriation intention using structural equation modeling", International Journal of Social Economics, Vol. 50 No. 1, pp. 128-147. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJSE-04-2022-0233

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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