Pourakhi, an organization established by women returnees in 2003, has collected more than 1,700 case studies on returnee women migrant workers in Nepal. This paper delves into 307 of these, as well as a consultation with 14 returnee migrant women from 14 districts, to better understand the reintegration process. Rather than focusing on a (necessary) critique of labour markets and on the high human, social and financial costs of migration, this study aims at giving voice to the subjectivities of migrant women in Nepal, as less attention has been paid to this aspect. It unpacks their reasons for undertaking international migration and their struggle for capability to secure a livelihood in the context of globalization.
This paper was produced for UN Women’s flagship report Progress of the World’s Women 2018 to be released as part of the UN Women dicussion paper series.