Welcome to the website of my research project “The social impact of immigration policy on the health and well-being of Vietnamese marriage migrants in Taiwan and South Korea.”
Vietnamese Marriage Migrants in Taiwan and South Korea
Taiwan and South Korea have seen drastically rising numbers of international marriages involving foreign female spouses from Southeast Asia, mostly from Vietnam. In response, these two countries have adopted major immigration policy changes and welfare programs to integrate female marriage migrants and their children into these “new immigrant societies”.
According to the latest statistics, Vietnamese marriage migrants (VMMs) comprise the second largest ethnic group in these two countries, where the numbers have reached 84,246 in Taiwan in 2010 and 90,931 in South Korea in 2009.
Due to the historical background and the social development of Vietnam, most VMMs in Taiwan and Korea who grew up in the Mekong Delta region did not have the opportunities to receive as much education as they wish to. VMMs may pick up some customs quickly because Vietnam shares similar Confucian traditions with Taiwan and South Korea. However, they still need time and support to adjust to new ways of living and especially the marriage just like all other newly-weds, plus they have the largest age gaps with their husbands among all marriage migrants in Taiwan and South Korea.
The purpose of this project is to better understand the life circumstances and health concerns of VMMs after they moved to Taiwan or South Korea, and to inform the Taiwanese and Korean healthcare systems of their needs.
This project will also explore how immigration policies and welfare programs can better support VMMs’ integration into Taiwanese and Korean societies from their own experiences and perspectives, which will in turn support their children to integrate.
Ultimately, this project aims to improve the well-being of VMMs, their natal families in Vietnam, and marital families in Taiwan and South Korea.
With this website, I would like to openly express my gratitude to the enormous support I received throughout the development and implementation of this project.
I would also take this opportunity to spread the words that I am (1) looking for interviewees (2) recruiting translators for my fieldwork in Taiwan and South Korea (see Recruitment for details).
Most important of all, I would like to connect scholars and community organizations in Vietnam, Taiwan, and South Korea who all work to improve the well-being of VMMs together, and gather practical resources and information available in Vietnamese.
Finally, I will collect learning resources for everyone interested in the phenomenon of marriage migration in Asia. Materials will include the discussions on international marriage migration and its impact on social change, the health and well-being of minority women, and the experiences of Vietnamese immigrants in Western societies.
A Personal Note
Throughout the development of this project, I have been asked numerous times on how I got started in this topic with this specific population. Here is a detailed personal note for those who are interested.