Although there has been a significant study of remittances sent by migrants to their origin countries, reverse economic flows originating from sending contexts have so far received little attention. This paper shows that Ecuadorian migrants living in Europe use financial support from their relatives and their own economic resources from their origin country deriving from the renting of their properties, and to a lesser extent other sources. Financial means from Ecuador are used to ensure various transnational social protection needs both in Europe and in Ecuador, mostly by long-settled economic migrants. Such arrangements emerged for 21 out of the total 63 transnational families considered in our study, investigated through a multi-sited ethnography with a partially matched sample, conducted in 2015-2016 in Spain, England, and Ecuador. These unusual economic flows reflect an indirect reciprocity system of mutual responsibilities operating over large time frames and sometimes involve emotional discomfort and relational dissonances.
- care circulation
- reverse remittances
- transnational families
- transnational social protection