Improving the Psychological Health of Foreign Workers in Developing Countries: A Socio-Ecological Analysis of the Saudi Construction Industry


Haitham Alrasheed and Imriyas Kamardeen
Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Series: Social Issues, Justice and Status
BISAC: SOC026000

Managing psychological health of the workforce in developing countries has more challenges than in developed nations. Among the challenges are: bureaucracy, ineffective institutional structures for implementing work health and safety laws, and ignorance on the part of workers about their rights to a decent workplace. However, the manifestation of these challenges varies from country to country, and therefore requires contextualised studies. Countries in the Middle East feature a unique phenomenon compared to other developing countries. Generally, its workforce is composed of expatriate workers from neighbouring developing countries. Among the Middle Eastern industries, the Saudi construction industry boasts a rapid growth with mega projects, but it has been reported that the psychological health of foreign workers who make it possible is constantly deteriorating. However, so far no studies have been undertaken to provide a solution to this dismal situation. This book aims to contribute to the improvement of the psychological wellbeing of foreign workers in the Saudi construction industry. The book first explores the factors affecting the psychological health of foreign workers and then provides a framework of suggestions to counteract them. This book demonstrates the application of the socio-ecological theory as an effective lens to analyse the problem and to develop solutions. Traditionally, it is believed that excessive mental stressors in professional settings are the primary triggers of poor psychological health among workers. However, the socio-ecological model looks beyond the workplace and explains the complex interactions between humans and their environments (social, institutional and cultural contexts of people) that influence the psychological health and human behaviours. It also guides a scientifically methodical design of research for broad investigations. The book will therefore serve as a valuable and handy resource for construction professionals, work health and safety authorities, researchers, academics and tertiary students. Although the book has been written, taking the Saudi construction industry as the central focus, the content is relevant to all developing countries, especially developing Middle Eastern countries. (Imprint: Nova)

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

List of Figures

List of Tables





Chapter 1. Introduction

Chapter 2. Migrant Workers and Stress at the Workplace

Chapter 3. Research Methodology

Chapter 4. Socio-Ecological Analysis of Factors Affecting the Psychological Health of Foreign Construction Workers in Saudi Arabia

Chapter 5. Socio-Ecological Framework of Solutions for Improving the Psychological Health of Foreign Construction Workers in Saudi Arabia

Chapter 6. Conclusion


Author’s Contact Information


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