MWG-NW Seminar: Dr Simone Castellani

Shaping health care in-between the borders: Transnational health protection practices among Ecuadorian migrants in Italy.

25th February 2019, 4-6pm, Tech Hub Boardroom

Dr Simone Castellani

Last years economic recession in the EU has accelerated the deterioration of Welfare State policies, especially in the countries of the “periphery” (King et al., 2014) as for instance Italy, which were affected most because of the austerity measures imposed by the so-called “Troika”. The health care sector has been one of the most struck ones by the cuts in public expenditure (EESC, 2013; Kentikelenis et al., 2015). The austerity politics have affected especially the most vulnerable social groups, among them migrants who are largely employed in unprotected jobs and rely in precarious citizenship status (Cohen, 2001). Nevertheless, as it was put into the spot by a flourishing literature, people who are engaged in international migration projects, both migrants and no migrants, struggle to shape their social protection besides the Nation-State (Faist, Bilecen, Barglowski, & Sienkiewicz, 2015) combining transnationally different resources at their disposal within their multilevel environment (Levitt, et al., 2016). Drawing on 20 in-depth interviews with Ecuadorian migrants who lives in Genoa (Italy) carried out within an international project on Global Social Protection, this paper will focus on how migrants combine different resources coming from their networks, the State, the Market, the NGOs, both in destination as in origin, for granting health care to themselves and to the members of their transnational domestic group. Paper shows, first, that legal status contributes highly to determine the transnational health protection practices both in terms of access to the national welfare systems as well as in terms of multi-sited displacements for receiving health care. Second, the combination between social and cultural capitals seems crucial in order to mobilize and combine different transnational health care resources. Finally, paper highlight as the circulation of drugs, healing remedies and health advice are an essential transnational social protection practice, both in material and symbolic terms.

Dr Simone Castellani is postdoctoral research fellow at the University Institute of Lisbon (CIES-IUL) carrying out a project on the new Portuguese migrations toward Germany. He holds a PhD in Social Anthropology (University of Seville, Spain) and in Migration and Intercultural Processes (University of Genoa, Italy). He was guest lecture at the University of Bielefeld and visiting fellow and at the INAH (Mexico), CONICET (Argentina), University of Santa Caterina (Brazil), University of Bielefeld and University of Freiburg (Germany), Wellesley College (US), FLACSO-Ecuador and University of Sussex (UK). His topics of research are related with the international migratory processes. Specifically, he has studied the Latino American migration flows toward Europe, paying particular attention to the so-called second generation, and the new Southern European migration flows toward Germany during the last economic recession. In the recent past he integrated the UPWEB-NORFACE project team which focuses on the practices of welfare bricolage in contexts marked by high super-diversity. Further, he collaborated with the Global Social Protection project, leaded by the Transnational Studies Initiative at the University of Harvard, which investigate transnational social protection focusing on the access to the health care of Ecuadorian migrants in US, Italy, Spain and Ecuador. Last publications: with Martín Diaz (2019) “Re-writing the domestic role. Transnational migrants’ households between informal and formal social protection in Ecuador and in Spain” in Comparative Migration Studies (January). (2018); “Sliding down. New Spanish and Italian migrants’ labour insertion” in Sociologia del lavoro. 149, 77-93; with Lagomarsino (2016) “The unseen protagonists. Ecuadorians’ daughters between Ecuador and Southern Europe”, Social Identities, 22(3), 291-306

This is a joint seminar, organised by the Migration Working Group – North West and Edge Hill University’s Department of Social Sciences.