Pandemic Precarity and the Livelihoods of Migrant Workers in China and Cambodia


Creating jobs and providing decent employment is central to global development agendas. Indeed, Sustainable Development Goal 8 targets nothing less than decent work for all by 2030. Yet precarious—simply put poorly paid, unprotected and insecure—work is a defining feature of late capitalism, and nowhere is this more obvious than among the migrant workers in Asia whose labour largely sustains global production networks.

How did the Covid-19 pandemic impact the lives and livelihoods of migrant workers in East and Southeast Asia? What kind of long term impacts is the pandemic likely to have, and what are the prospects for decent jobs in the region?

In this episode Arve Hansen of the Norwegian Network for Asian Studies is joined by Dennis Arnold and Thomas Sætre Jakobsen to discuss pandemic precarity in China and Cambodia.

The Nordic Asia Podcast is a collaboration sharing expertise on Asia across the Nordic region, brought to you by the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies (NIAS) based at the University of Copenhagen, along with our academic partners: the Centre for East Asian Studies at the University of Turku, Asianettverket at the University of Oslo, and the Stockholm Centre for Global Asia at Stockholm University.

We aim to produce timely, topical and well-edited discussions of new research and developments about Asia.

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Arve Hansen

Arve Hansen is a researcher at the Centre for Development and the Environment at the University of Oslo and lead the Norwegian Network for Asian Studies. Hansen's research focuses mainly on consumption and sustainability, particularly within the realms of food and mobility, in Southeast Asia and Norway.

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