The Newsletter 69 Autumn 2014

Lifestyle migration in East Asia

Karen O'ReillyMaggy Lee

Lifestyle migration involves relatively affluent people moving either part-time or full-time, permanently or temporarily, to places that they believe will offer them a better quality of life. There is usually an economic incentive to their mobility, but the search for the good life is paramount in their motivations. Lifestyle migration is an increasingly widespread phenomenon, with effects for migrants, locals, cultural life, and economic life. It has been studied quite widely in European and American contexts, but has been overlooked in an Asian setting. Our research project was thus designed to address these gaps in knowledge and to capture the incentives, experiences and outcomes of lifestyle migration in Thailand, Malaysia and China.