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The importance of heterogeneity when examining immigrant education-occupation mismatch: evidence from New Zealand

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  • Jacques Poot

    ()
    (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research & University of Waikato)

  • Steven Stillman

    ()
    (Motu Economic and Public Policy Research & University of Waikato)

Abstract

Many immigrants are overqualified in their first job after arrival in the host country. Education-occupation mismatch can affect the economic integration of immigrants and the returns to education and experience. The extent of this problem has been measured in recent years by means of micro level data in Australia, North America and Europe. However, these papers have typically ignored the importance of allowing for heterogeneity, in particular by qualification level and years in the destination country. In this paper, we use micro data from the 1996, 2001 and 2006 New Zealand censuses to examine differences between each migrant's actual years of education and the estimated typical years of education in the narrowly defined occupation in which they work. We find that migrants living in New Zealand for less than 5 years are on average overeducated, while earlier migrants are on average undereducated. However, once accounting for heterogeneity, we find that both overeducated and undereducated migrants become, with increasing years of residence in New Zealand, more similar to comparable native born. Convergence from overeducation is stronger than from undereducation.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London in its series CReAM Discussion Paper Series with number 1023.

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Date of creation: Sep 2010
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Handle: RePEc:crm:wpaper:1023

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Keywords: immigration; occupation; skill transferability; job-worker mismatch; discrimination; New Zealand;

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References

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  1. Anna Maria Mayda (Georgetown University), 2005. "Who Is Against Immigration? A Cross-Country Investigation of Individual Attitudes towards Immigrants," Working Papers gueconwpa~05-05-10, Georgetown University, Department of Economics.
  2. Joanne Lindley, 2007. "The Over-Education of UK Immigrants and Minority Ethnic Groups: Evidence from the Labour Force Survey," Working Papers 2007013, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics, revised Sep 2007.
  3. Paul W. Miller & Barry R. Chiswick, 2006. "Why is the Payoff to Schooling Smaller for Immigrants?," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 06-03, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
  4. Lewis Evans & Arthur Grimes & Bryce Wilkinson, 1996. "Economic Reform in New Zealand 1984-95: The Pursuit of Efficiency," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(4), pages 1856-1902, December.
  5. Sattinger, Michael, 1993. "Assignment Models of the Distribution of Earnings," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(2), pages 831-80, June.
  6. Barrett, Alan & Duffy, David, 2007. "Are Ireland’s Immigrants Integrating into its Labour Market?," IZA Discussion Papers 2838, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Papps, Kerry L. & Newell, James O., 2002. "Identifying Functional Labour Market Areas in New Zealand: A Reconnaissance Study Using Travel-to-Work Data," IZA Discussion Papers 443, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Cristina Fernández & Carolina Ortega, 2008. "Labor market assimilation of immigrants in Spain: employment at the expense of bad job-matches?," Spanish Economic Review, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 83-107, June.
  9. Chiswick, Barry R. & Miller, Paul W., 2009. "The international transferability of immigrants' human capital," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 162-169, April.
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Cited by:
  1. Piracha, Matloob & Vadean, Florin, 2012. "Migrant Educational Mismatch and the Labour Market," IZA Discussion Papers 6414, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Sandra Nieto & Alessia Matano & Raul Ramos, 2013. "“Skill mismatches in the EU: Immigrants vs. natives”," IREA Working Papers 201318, University of Barcelona, Research Institute of Applied Economics, revised Oct 2013.
  3. Jacques Poot & Bridget Daldy & Matthew Roskruge, 2013. "Perception of workplace discrimination among immigrants and native born New Zealanders," Australian Journal of Labour Economics (AJLE), Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre (BCEC), Curtin Business School, vol. 16(1), pages 137-154.
  4. Rob Hodgson & Jacques Poot, 2011. "New Zealand Research on the Economic Impacts of Immigration 2005-2010: Synthesis and Research Agenda," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1104, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  5. Stuart Campbell, 2013. "Over-education among A8 migrants in the UK," DoQSS Working Papers 13-09, Department of Quantitative Social Science - Institute of Education, University of London.

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