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Ethnic identity and labour market outcomes of immigrants in Europe

Alberto Bisin , Eleonora Patacchini , Thierry Verdier , Yves Zenou
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-0327.2010.00258.x 57-92 First published online: 1 January 2011

Abstract

We study the relationship between ethnic identity and labour market outcomes of non-EU immigrants in Europe. Using the European Social Survey, we find that there is a penalty to be paid for immigrants with a strong identity. Being a first generation immigrant leads to a penalty of about 17% while second-generation immigrants have a probability of being employed that is not statistically different from that of natives. However, when they have a strong identity, second-generation immigrants have a lower chance of finding a job than natives. Our analysis also reveals that the relationship between ethnic identity and employment prospects may depend on the type of integration and labour market policies implemented in the country where the immigrant lives. More flexible labour markets help immigrants to access the labour market but do not protect those who have a strong ethnic identity.

— Alberto Bisin, Eleonora Patacchini, Thierry Verdier and Yves Zenou

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