Who Cares? Analysis of the Country of Origin Effect applied to Immigrant Elderly Caregivers

Kristin Möller & Marisa Patricia Hohmann

Student thesis: Master thesis


While national labor shortages for elderly care increase policy and firm decision makers’ dependence on immigrants to fill this gap, an understanding of individuals’ predispositions toward the foreign workers’ country of origin is vital for their integration in the host country’s labor market. These country predispositions and attitudes toward immigrant workers are influenced by people’s personality traits. However, research on the country of origin (COO) effect on immigrants as service providers, and the impact of individual personality traits on the country predispositions in an employment context is scarce. Drawing on a holistic country-induced predispositions model that unites cognitive and emotional components of the COO image construct, we qualitatively and quantitatively shed light on how the COO image of the immigrant’s nationality affects personnel decision makers’ employment behavior, and how this relation is moderated by personality traits. Thereby, we compare one culturally close-knit and one distant immigrant country of origin regarding the host country’s perception. Findings show that country-induced predispositions play a role in employers’ willingness to hire and expected service quality of foreign caregivers, with personnel decision makers being more positively inclined toward immigrants from countries with appreciated COO images. Further, the personality trait extraversion has a moderating influence on the effect of country predispositions on employment behavior. This research extends the COO image concept to the people service and employment context as well as provides governmental institutions and private companies with an understanding that the COO image of immigrants’ nationalities matter for personnel decision makers’ employment behavior, and which cognitive and emotional components need to be considered.

EducationsMSc in International Marketing and Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2020
Number of pages107
SupervisorsAlexander Josiassen