Ethnic Identity and Labor-Market Outcomes of Immigrants in Europe

By: Alberto Bisin (New York University)
Eleonora Patacchini (La Sapienza University of Rome, Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF) and CEPR)
Thierry Verdier (Paris School of Economics (PSE) and CEPR)
Yves Zenou (Stockholm University, Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN), CEPR, IZA and CREAM)

URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:crm:wpaper:1103&r=ltv

We study the relationship between ethnic identity and labor-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 percent 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 labor-market policies implemented in the country where the immigrant lives. More flexible labor markets help immigrants to access the labor market but do not protect those who have a strong ethnic identity.

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