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Accepted Paper:

Lavorare dal Sud: Return to ‘Southern’ Italy and remote work in pandemic times  
Flavia Cangià (University of Lausanne)

Paper short abstract:

This paper explores the experiences of professionals who, following the outbreak of Covid-19, relocated back to their hometowns in Italy while working remotely. How do these workers practice return and various (im)mobilities through remote work while (re)making career and life trajectories?

Paper long abstract:

The recent outbreak of the Covid-19 has posed new challenges to mobility for many and has concomitantly stimulated an increase of remote work for some. Favoured by new remote-working policies, some people take advantage of the virtualization of work to travel and work from alternative locations. The diffusion of remote work practices has made some work-related mobile practices ‘non-essential’ (e.g., commuting, business travel) and has encouraged alternative mobilities that now appear ‘essential’ to people at more existential and personal levels. This paper explores the experiences of professionals who, following the outbreak of the Covid-19, relocated back to their hometowns in Italy from abroad or from other Italian regions while working remotely. This phenomenon, also known as ‘South-working’ – Lavorare dal Sud, has particularly intensified with the recent pandemic. For some, the Covid-19 challenged certain mobile practices once taken for granted. Places that once seemed easily ‘reachable’ for occasional visits became ‘remote’ due to the emerging mobility restrictions. The lockdown and the limitations of movement linked to the pandemic hence prompted the decision to return, reunite with families, and rethink life priorities thanks to virtual remote work and alternative mobility strategies. How do these workers practice return and various (im)mobilities through remote work while (re)making career and life trajectories? How do they re-make sense of the ‘remoteness’ of return destinations following the Covid-19?

Panel P010b
Navigating hurdles and pacing (im)mobilities in times of corona [AnthroMob Network] II
  Session 1 Wednesday 27 July, 2022, -