Contradictory Economic and Non-Economic Quality of Life of Migrant Workers: A Mixed Method Approach of Bangladeshi Construction Workers in Malaysia
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Migration studies are increasingly validating that non-economic factors like subjective well-being or Quality of Life (QoL) carry substantial weight over the economic dimensions. Yet, there is a lack of research on the economic and non-economic wellbeing or QoL of the migrant workers in Asia, in respect of QoL of the Bangladeshi migrant workers in Malaysia. This parallel convergent mixed method research investigates to find out the levels of QoL of Bangladeshi construction workers in Malaysia, the reasons behind those levels and the correlation of economic and non-economic factors. Thematic analysis was used for the qualitative research to find out the levels of QoL and quantitative research followed the hypothetic-deductive method to examine the correlation of income, housing and freedom over QoL. The scope of the study covers only the Bangladesh construction workers who have been staying in Malaysia for less than ten years. Results show that 20% of the respondents are leaving a measurable life and around 60% of workers are prone to illegality in terms of informal striving for economic activities, whereas, 12% of workers enjoy their QoL. ‘Paradox of economic activities pushing Bangladeshi construction workers towards non-economic paradox like ignoring housing and legal freedom’ is also an outcome of this research.