Citizens of the world: the integration of transnationally connected Bangladeshi and Pakistani immigrants into Australian society

Iqbal, M 2014, Citizens of the world: the integration of transnationally connected Bangladeshi and Pakistani immigrants into Australian society, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Global, Urban and Social Studies, RMIT University.


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Title Citizens of the world: the integration of transnationally connected Bangladeshi and Pakistani immigrants into Australian society
Author(s) Iqbal, M
Year 2014
Abstract The purpose of this study was to research the settlement and transnational activities of Bangladeshi and Pakistani migrants who had arrived in Australia during the 1980-2002 and permanently residing in Melbourne. As a lack of information existed relative to their settlement, integration and transnational perspectives, a detailed research study was conducted through a semi-structured questionnaire survey, involving 73 Bangladeshi and 71 Pakistani respondents living in Melbourne at the time of interview. In order to address the central research question, both quantitative and qualitative techniques using multiple research methods have been used in the present research. The research question was ‘how well have the Bangladeshi and Pakistani transnationally connected migrants settled and integrated into the host Australian society in Melbourne?.

The research revealed that that respondents’ life, from the moment of arrival in a new land, was always challenging and to some of them, was not successful. They discovered a huge difference between the pre and post departure situations. In the statistical analysis, it was found that social, economic (employment and income) and psychological factors showed higher levels of correlationships with the level of social integration. The study revealed that some respondents from both communities integrated well, both socially and psychologically within a short time of arrival and for some, it was not. The level of social integration showed variations among different socio-economic categories of the Bangladeshi and Pakistani communities in Melbourne. The study has shown, to some extent, that the process of acculturation through adaptation in Melbourne by the two communities, have been a two way process where migrant respondents as well as the host society, have accepted as well as rejected each other in the process.

Respondents of both communities were found deeply engaged in transnational activities. They have also developed linear as well as circular networks od social connection across the globe. The increased involvement in transnational activities by both the permanent and temporary migrants in countries of destinations, have modified the shape and nature of traditional diaspora. However, despite high levels of transnational engagements, respondents from both communities opined that such intensive transnational engagements did not impede their normal activities and thereby the processes of integration. The dimension of diaspora is changing with time and increased interaction between diasporic and transnational migrants are becoming more visible in the community. The result of such interaction is evident in the formation of ‘trans-diasporic’ ethnic communities in Australian society and the Bangladeshi and Pakistani migrants were not an exception.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Global, Urban and Social Studies
Keyword(s) transnational
migration
trans-diasporic
Bangladeshis and Pakistanis
settlement
south Asian culture
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