Expatriate bubbles in Dubai: Expatriates from West and East Cohabitating with Locals

Primecz, Henriett ORCID: (2023) Expatriate bubbles in Dubai: Expatriates from West and East Cohabitating with Locals. Journal of Global Mobility . DOI

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Purpose: Focusing on the stratification of expatriates and the boundaries between different types of expatriates and locals, this study investigates the lived experiences and testimonies of Eastern European expatriates and their relationships in Dubai. The purpose of this article to develop our current knowledge on expatriates cohabiting in a cosmopolitan city by providing empirical evidence on expatriate bubbles in Dubai. Design/methodology/approach: Explorative qualitative research was conducted using online and faceto- face interviews, along with a week-long intensive ethnography with observations, interviews, and informal discussions. Findings: Three distinct groups of people live in Dubai namely, Westerners, expatriates from the East, and Emiratis. They hardly mingle with each other on equal terms, but they do work in a complementary fashion. In Dubai, the status of East European experts, a subgroup of Westerners, is similar to their Western counterparts in that they are considered European. Consequently, they experience a slight status development in comparison to when they work in the West. The research provides evidence on social stratification of expatriate bubbles. Originality: Expatriate bubbles have not previously been empirically investigated from an Eastern European perspective, nor has the unique case of Dubai been analysed extensively. Distinct expatriate bubbles with their stratified hierarchies have been identified. Research limitation: This very short ethnography with a relatively small number of qualitative interviews could be complemented by a further in-depth study.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:expatriate bubble, Dubai, Eastern Europe, social stratification of expatriates, citizenship, residence
Divisions:Institute of Strategy and Management
Subjects:Culture, sport
ID Code:7833
Deposited By: Ádám Hoffmann
Deposited On:20 Jan 2023 13:26
Last Modified:20 Jan 2023 13:26

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