Differentiated experiences of financial precarity and lived precariousness among international students in Australia

Springer Science and Business Media LLC
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Higher Education
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AbstractEmpirical research on international student migrants has sometimes homogenised this group, framing it as predominantly made up of privileged members of the global middle-class. This has led to calls to acknowledge and address the precarity faced by international students in their respective host countries more comprehensively. This study aims to explore how levels of financial precarity vary among international students in Australia, and how this in turn contributes to varying levels of precariousness in the personal spheres of students’ lives. In doing so, we centre and refine the concept of precarity for use in studies of internationally mobile students, arguing for its use as a ‘relational nexus’, bridging financial precarity and broader lived experiences. Drawing on a large-scale survey and semi-structured interviews with 48 students, we emphasise the linkages between financial precarity and precariousness as a socio-ontological experience, explored through the examples of time poverty, physical and mental wellbeing, and relationships.
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