Native worker or local worker, which one is correct? and if both are correct what do they mean each? Thank you

  • Native worker is the one who works in a country he/she was born in. It's like native vs immigrant workers. Local worker could be similar. To say what's more appropriate to use, you would need to provide more context.
    – Jan
    Aug 10, 2019 at 11:54

2 Answers 2


The answer by Alan is quite correct, but there is an additional nuance to the phrase "native worker" which one should be careful of. This phrase was often used by European colonialist rulers or self-proclaimed elites in non-European countries, such as India and much of Africa to refer workers from the native non-European population, implying that such workers had significantly lower status. In any country where there is a history of European colonialism, this term might be considered offensive and carry implications beyond simply "person born in the country or area". That sense may be fading as these events recede into the past, but not everywhere.


Native might imply that the person was born in the country, but maybe not - they might have been born of immigrant parents who, themselves, are not native to the country.

This is a fraught area, and you would have to question at what point someone becomes 'native'.

Local might imply the same thing, but there is a sense in which you can become 'local' simply by living in an area for a reasonable period of time, and that you can be a 'local' without being a native.

There is no rule around this - it is just a nuance I guess.

There is also an expression: 'Gone native'

That means that someone, who is not native, is now acting in ways that are similar to the locals (!)


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