Virginia Páez Izquierdo (Complutense University of Madrid)


Mercedes Muriel Saiz; Complutense University of Madrid
María Isabel Martín Estalayo; Complutense University of Madrid
Topic: Social services and European retirement migration: communication strategies and challenges
Language: English 


This study examines the impact of international retirement migration, in particular how retirement migrants communicate with social workers and their relationship with Social Services in Spain. Several studies have shown the socio-demographic characteristics and the motivating forces behind retirement migration, but none of them has made an in-depth study regarding communication needs. Taking into account that this migration is related to the condition of advancing age, it is presumable that these individuals will eventually need care provision. This paper is part of a three-year research project called ‘The Retirement of Europe: The Impact of Retirement Migration on Social Services’ funded by the Spanish Ministry of Science. The methodology used in this study includes telephone and one-on-one interviews with European retirees living in Spain, social workers and coordinators from municipalities with a high presence of EU retirees, and other actors involved in this issue (nursing homes, voluntary organizations, etc.). This study shows the overall situation regarding communication and the impact that this particular migration has on the Social Services of the municipalities where retirement migrants settle down, and it raises the questions whether the issue of language implies social and cultural structures underneath words.