Journal article accepted: Intermediaries of the super-rich

I am very pleased to share that a journal article Bart Wissink and I worked on (and waited patiently) for the past 1.5 years has been accepted for publication. The article will be part of a special issue on ‘New Directions in Exploring the Migration Industries’ for the Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies.

In this article, we bring two bodies of work together: (1) the literature on the super-rich; and (2) the literature on the migration industries (or the migration infrastructures). The empirical material draws from our research conducted in Hong Kong in 2014-2015.

While we wait for the article to be published (estimated end April 2017), here’s an early preview of it.

Enabling, Structuring and Creating Elite Transnational Lifestyles: Intermediaries of the Super-Rich and the Elite Mobilities Industry

Sin Yee Koh & Bart Wissink

This article considers how the migration industries lens can be usefully employed in understanding how professional intermediaries enable, structure and create transnational migration lifestyles of the super-rich. In particular, we examine how intermediaries and their services (1) enable the continued sustenance of transnational migration lifestyles for this group of elites; and (2) structure and create elite transnational lifestyles. This article primarily draws on interviews with professional intermediaries who service the super-rich, and content analysis of their websites and brochures. Inspired by insights from the new mobilities paradigm (and in particular the politics of mobility), we argue for an expanded conceptualisation of the migration industries beyond the literature’s current focus on labour recruitment and migration management. Specifically, we suggest thinking of the migration industries as a collection of actors and services that enable, structure and create different types of ‘migrants’, their spaces and their highly uneven transnational mobilities – including that of the super-rich and their elite transnational lifestyles. We conclude with suggestions for a research agenda that may help to better understand the role of intermediaries in the creation of differentiated mobilities.

Keywords: elite transnational lifestyles; intermediaries; migration industries; mobile elites; mobilities industries; super-rich

You can read the pre-proof version of the article on my or ResearchGate pages. Once published, the article will be available here.

Check out the complete list of my publications here.


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