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Text | DIGITAL NOMADS: EMPLOYMENT IN THE ONLINE GIG ECONOMY | 008
8 BEVERLY YUEN THOMPSON
African descent, two were Asian, and three were mixed race Asian and white.
Thirty of the participants were heterosexual, three were bi- sexual, and five were lesbian, gay, or queer identified. Six of the participants were married (with two in the process of divorce), while the majority of them were single (n=32), with ten in signifi- cant relationships. Only one participant out of thirty-seven had children (now grown). Only six participants hoped for children in the future, with fifteen unsure, and thirteen adamant about re- maining child-free.
Most of the participants held Bachelors’ degrees (n=23). Nine participants had graduate degrees (MA=6; JD=1; PhD=2). Six participants did not complete college. Four had some college edu- cation, and one participant graduated with a high school degree. Half of the participants had no student debt (n=20) and the other half had student debt (n=18). Excessive student debt is a barrier for becoming a digital nomad for many North Americans. Crimi- nal records pose barriers for travel. Only one of the participants had a minor misdemeanor criminal charge, which had been ex- punged.
Only six participants held a religious identity: including one Hindu, one Muslim, and four Christians. Some qualified them- selves as “spiritual”.
I asked the participants about the occupational background of their parents. Eight participants had mothers who spend ex- tended years raising children and not working outside of the home. Five of these mothers worked before or after their chil- drearing years, including as a hairdresser and four who worked in offices. Eight of the mothers worked in elementary education or in daycare. Three mothers worked in the service industry, three in office contexts, and three in nursing. Five worked at higher levels in business, and two mothers were engineers. Many of the moth- ers graduated college, but half did not. The mothers tended to work in female-dominated careers, took time off for childcare du- ties, and had occupations that were lower-skilled, lower-ranked, and lower-paid than their spouses. Six participants did not specify their mothers’ occupations.
Thirty-four participants specified their father’s occupation. In general, their fathers were college-educated, well-paid, and held high-ranking positions. Eleven worked in business: as middle-
GLOCALISM: JOURNAL OF CULTURE, POLITICS AND INNOVATION 2018, 1, DOI: 10.12893/gjcpi.2018.1.11
Published online by “Globus et Locus” at www.glocalismjournal.net
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