Deciding to work abroad: The decision making process behind geographical and occupational mobilities of nurses

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This research creates an understanding of the individual decision-making processes of Filipino nurses to become geographically and occupationally mobile. This research is based on the threshold approach by Van der Velde and Van Naerssen (2015), which argues that the decision-making process includes three thresholds that have to be passed: the mental (whether and why to become mobile), the locational (where to become mobile to) and the trajectory threshold (how to become mobile). This research explains how different factors increase and decrease these three thresholds. Through the method of interviews, it has become clear that the mental and locational thresholds are influenced by many similar factors: These factors often ‘push’ nurses away from the Philippines and ‘pull’ them to other geographical locations. The trajectory threshold is mainly influenced by factors relating to the program of a recruitment agency. Because of subjective experiences, the factors influence each individual differently, and the decision-making process is non-linear and perpetual. The locational threshold is the most significant threshold, and the locational and trajectory thresholds are almost indistinguishable, especially in regard to occupational mobility. Moreover, the decision-making process behind geographical mobility is more significant than behind occupational mobility, but the mobilities depend on each other. Keywords: decision-making process, geographical mobility, occupational mobility, threshold approach, subjective experiences
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