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Work and Money: Payoffs by Ethnic Identity and Gender

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  • Amelie Constant
  • Klaus F. Zimmermann

Abstract

Upon arrival in the host country, immigrants undergo a fundamental identity crisis. Their ethnic identity being questioned, they can be classified into four states - assimilation, integration, separation and marginalization. This is suggested by the ethnosizer, a newly established measure to parameterize a person's ethnic identity, using individual information on language, culture, societal interaction, history of migration, and ethnic self-identification. In what state individuals end up varies among immigrants even from the same country. Moreover, the quest for ethnic identity affects women and men differentially. This paper contends that ethnic identity can significantly affect the attachment to and performance of immigrants in the host country labor market, beyond human capital and ethnic origin characteristics. Empirical estimates for immigrants in Germany show that ethnic identity is important for the decision to work and significantly and differentially affects the labor force participation of men and women. Women who exhibit the integrated identity are more likely to work than women who are German assimilated; this does not hold for men. However, once we control for selection in the labor market and a slew of individual and labor market characteristics, ethnic identity does not significantly affect the earnings of men or women immigrant workers.

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File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.100081.de/dp908.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin with number 908.

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Length: 31 p.
Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp908

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Keywords: Ethnosizer; ethnicity; ethnic identity; immigrant assimilation; integration; ethnic earnings;

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References

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  1. GianMarco Ottaviano & Giovanni Peri, 2004. "The Economic Value of Cultural Diversity: Evidence from US cities," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 91, Econometric Society.
  2. Constant, Amelie F. & Roberts, Rowan & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2007. "Ethnic Identity and Immigrant Homeownership," IZA Discussion Papers 3050, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Bisin, Alberto & Patacchini, Eleonora & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2007. "Are Muslim Immigrants Different in Terms of Cultural Integration?," CEPR Discussion Papers 6453, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Constant, Amelie F. & Gataullina, Liliya & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2006. "Ethnosizing Immigrants," IZA Discussion Papers 2040, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. David Austen-Smith & Roland G. Fryer, 2005. "An Economic Analysis of "Acting White"," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 120(2), pages 551-583, May.
  6. Bisin, Alberto & Patacchini, Eleonora & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2006. "'Bend It Like Beckham': Identity, Socialization and Assimilation," CEPR Discussion Papers 5662, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Constant, Amelie F. & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2007. "Measuring Ethnic Identity and Its Impact on Economic Behavior," IZA Discussion Papers 3063, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Fearon, James D. & Laitin, David D., 2000. "Violence and the Social Construction of Ethnic Identity," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 54(04), pages 845-877, September.
  9. Kuran, Timur, 1998. "Ethnic Norms and Their Transformation through Reputational Cascades," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 27(2), pages 623-59, June.
  10. Montgomery, James D, 1991. "Social Networks and Labor-Market Outcomes: Toward an Economic Analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1407-18, December.
  11. Chiswick, Carmel U., 2006. "The Economic Determinants of Ethnic Assimilation," IZA Discussion Papers 2212, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Constant, Amelie & Gataullina, Liliya & Zimmermann, Klaus F & Zimmermann, Laura, 2006. "Clash of Cultures: Muslims and Christians in the Ethnosizing Process," CEPR Discussion Papers 5910, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. Harminder Battu & McDonald Mwale & Yves Zenou, 2007. "Oppositional identities and the labor market," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 643-667, July.
  14. Darity, William Jr. & Mason, Patrick L. & Stewart, James B., 2006. "The economics of identity: The origin and persistence of racial identity norms," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 60(3), pages 283-305, July.
  15. Klaus Zimmermann, 2007. "The economics of migrant ethnicity," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 487-494, July.
  16. Herbert Gintis & Samuel Bowles & Melissa Osborne, 2001. "Incentive-Enhancing Preferences: Personality, Behavior, and Earnings," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 155-158, May.
  17. Mason, Patrick L., 2004. "Annual income, hourly wages, and identity Among Mexican Americans and other Latinos," MPRA Paper 11326, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  18. Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2007. "Migrant Ethnic Identity: Concept and Policy Implications," IZA Discussion Papers 3056, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  19. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics And Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753, August.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Nick Drydakis, 2013. "The effect of ethnic identity on the employment of immigrants," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 11(2), pages 285-308, June.
  2. Constant, Amelie & Krause, Annabelle & Rinne, Ulf & Zimmermann, Klaus F, 2011. "Reservation Wages of First and Second Generation Migrants," CEPR Discussion Papers 8208, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Brian Duncan & Stephen J Trejo, 2012. "The Complexity of Immigrant Generations: Implications for Assessing the Socioeconomic Integration of Hispanics and Asians," Working Papers id:4753, eSocialSciences.
  4. Simone Schüller, 2012. "Parental Ethnic Identity and Educational Attainment of Second-Generation Immigrants," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 443, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  5. Amelie F. Constant & Annabelle Krause & Ulf Rinne & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 2010. "Economic Preferences and Attitudes of the Unemployed: Are Natives and Second Generation Migrants Alike?," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1088, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  6. Drydakis, Nick, 2012. "The Effect of Ethnic Identity on the Employment of Immigrants," IZA Discussion Papers 6314, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Amelie F. Constant & Martin Kahanec & Ulf Rinne & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 2011. "Ethnicity, job search and labor market reintegration of the unemployed," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 32(7), pages 753-776, November.
  8. Constant, Amelie F. & Schüller, Simone & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2013. "Ethnic Spatial Dispersion and Immigrant Identity," IZA Discussion Papers 7868, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Amelie Constant & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 2009. "Migration, Ethnicity and Economic Integration," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 957, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  10. Georgiadis, Andreas & Manning, Alan, 2013. "One nation under a groove? Understanding national identity," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 166-185.

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