The Role of Urbanity, Status, and Identity on Migrant Remittance Management and Rural Development Potentials in Thailand


The Thai government has utilized various development initiatives to expand infrastructure, improve local services, and reduce poverty in the country's northern, northeastern, and southern regions. However, relative to the central region, which is dominated by Bangkok and its extended metropolitan zone, these regions have lagged in economic growth and infrastructural improvements. As a result, rural-urban migration notably from the north and northeast has continued into Bangkok. Migration scholars have proposed that in such high migration contexts, remittances may further local development in origin communities, overtime reducing structural and socioeconomic inequalities at regional and local levels. This study draws from ethnographic data collected in Thailand since 2009 to examine how respondents' subjectivities and socioeconomic backgrounds affect the management of remunerations and the degree and volume to which remittances flow to origin communities. Previous work has examined education, gender, or social relationship variables and their effect on remittance behaviors. Research has not traditionally incorporated migrants' subjectivities as additional variables to consider in the patterning of remittances. This research contributes to this area and exhibits important implications for state policies that rely upon such monetary flows as contributors to rural income and economic growth.


Sociology and Anthropology

Document Type





Thailand, migration, remittances, development, urbanism, subjectivities

Publication Date


Journal Title

Human Organization