The new Migration Policy Centre (MPC) Blog entry: Care work and the feminization of labour migration to Italy through the current economic crisis by Anna Di Bartolomeo, Research Fellow at the MPC, and Sabrina Marchetti, Jean Monnet Fellow at the Global Governance Programme, RSCAS, EUI

This post argues that what is happening in the current Italian economic crisis replicates tendencies already observed in the crises of the past century that challenge the predominant argument of “women as a reserve army”. Scholars have, indeed, shown how already during the Great Depression until the most recent 1997 Asian financial crisis, women labour participation did not follow the expectation of those who saw the female workforce as being welcomed in times of expansion, but rejected in economic contractions. On the contrary, the women labour participation rate has increased without any kind of job competition with men since men and women are normally hired following different patterns. This post enlarges the perspective of the risk of a male-female competition to a competition between foreign and Italian women, in times of crisis.