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Migration and Gender Roles: The Typical Work Pattern of the MENA Women12


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    The author wishes to gratefully acknowledge support and comments from Professor Peter McDonald, Dr. Edith Gray, and Dr. Siew-Ean Khoo at the Australian Demographic and Social Research Institute of The Australian National University, Canberra, ACT, Australia. The author also gratefully acknowledges constructive comments from three reviewers on the early version of this article and assistance from Dr. Julian Robert.

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    Earlier versions of this paper were presented at the 13th Biennial Conference of Australian Population Association (The University of Adelaide, Adelaide, Australia, 6-8 December, 2006), International Research Conference on Welfare and Value in Europe: Transition related to Religion, Minorities and Gender (University of Uppsala, Uppsala, Sweden, 26-28 March 2009), and XXVI Conference of International Union for Scientific Study of Population (Marrakech, Morocco 27 September - 2 October 2009).


This paper focuses on the association between migration and gender roles measured by women’s paid work. The main migrant group of this study, its context and the method of analysis provide opportunity to meet this objective appropriately. The paper focuses on female migrants from the Middle East and North Africa region, who are often characterized by traditional gender roles including women’s low rates of paid work. The residing country of this migrant group is Australia, which holds different gender roles including women’s high work participation rate. Accordingly, the multivariate results of this paper provide empirical evidence to examine the effects of migration on gender roles.