Career experiences of Kenyan migrant hotel workers in the UK hotel sector

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis

Abstract

Globalisation has led to many people moving from one country to another. The service sector, particularly the hosptiality and tourism sector is considered labour-intensive, therefore, acts as magnet for migrant labour and as such, is largely reliant on marginal workers. Furthermore, the hospitality industry is often used as an entry to the labour market, and finds itself as a large employer of migrant workers. However, the industry lies in the secondary labour market which is characterised by low wages, poor training, low unionisation, and general poor working conditions.Nevertheless, a career in the hospitality and tourism sector is often considered vibrant unlike in the western context. In the Kenyan context, workers undego a rigorous training, equipping them to work not only for their country but globally. Thus, the low-skill perception of the hospitality sector in the west, presents inconsistency in the labour market for a skilled workforce with the desire to pursue a career in the industry.As such, skilled Kenyan hotel migrant workers are faced with the limitations to progress their hotel career abroad. The presence of structural factors limits migrants’ career mobility in the host country resulting in underemployment and a degradation of their skills in advanced economies, such as the UK. construed as career loss.In evaluating the empirical evidence of the skilled Kenyan hotel migrant wokers, concepts have been employed to develop a framework for the understanding of complex intersection of a number of inter-related themes that include, inter alia, economic migration, migrant professional and social integration, motives for migrants to leave or stay in their host country and occupational underemployment, thereby contributing to migrant labour literature.
Date of Award4 Jun 2019
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University Of Strathclyde
SupervisorThomas Baum (Supervisor) & Dennis Nickson (Supervisor)

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