Gender, transnational communication, and aspiration for future overseas work among OFW children

  • Erwin A. Alampay
  • Khane Samala Raza
  • Ranjit S. Rye


This paper explores gender differences in transnational communication between Overseas Filipino Worker (OFW) parents and the children they left behind. Using survey data, it looks at how frequency of communication using Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) mutually familiarizes parents and children with each other’s activities. ICTs also serve as tools allowing OFWs to do parenting even though they are far away. We argue that this connectedness motivates children’s future aspiration to work overseas. Results indicate gender differences between daughters and sons in their frequency of communication with their parents, particularly via mobile phones. Daughters also report stronger connectedness with parents. In general, children who are more connected with their OFW parents are also more likely to share thoughts of working abroad, and express this as a life goal.

Author Biographies

Erwin A. Alampay
Erwin A. Alampay is an Associate Professor at the National College of Public Administration and Governance (NCPAG) in the University of the Philippines, and Director of the Center for Local and Regional Governance (CLRG). He is also currently a Senior Research Fellow with LirneAsia, an Asian regional ICT policy and regulation think-tank. Email:
Khane Samala Raza
Khane Samala-Raza is an Information Officer at the National Privacy Commission. She is earning her Master of Technology Management degree at the University of the Philippines. Her current research interests include ICT, data privacy, social development, and good governance. Email: khane.s.raza@
Ranjit S. Rye
Ranjit S. Rye is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Political Science, in the College of Social Sciences and Philosophy (CSSP) of the University of the Philippines. He is also the Assistant Vice President for Public Affairs and concurrent Director of the Office of Alumni Relations of the UP System. His current research interests include e-government and ICT for development. Email:


gender differences, ICT, international transfer of care, overseas employment, transnational parenting