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The Myth of Immigrant Women as Secondary Workers: Evidence from Canada

Author

Listed:
  • Al?cia Adser?
  • Ana M. Ferrer

Abstract

We use the confidential files of the Canadian Census 1991–2006, combined with information from O*NET on the skill requirements of jobs, to show that the labor market patterns of female immigrants do not fit the profile of secondary workers, but rather conform to the recent experience of married native women with rising participation (and wage assimilation). At best, only relatively uneducated immigrant women in unskilled occupations may fit the profile of secondary workers. Educated immigrant women experience skill assimilation over time: a reduction in physical strength and a gradual increase in analytical skills required in their jobs relative to natives.

Suggested Citation

  • Al?cia Adser? & Ana M. Ferrer, 2014. "The Myth of Immigrant Women as Secondary Workers: Evidence from Canada," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(5), pages 360-364, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:104:y:2014:i:5:p:360-64 Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.104.5.360
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Susumu Imai & Derek Stacey & Casey Warman, 2011. "From Engineer to Taxi Driver? Occupational Skills and the Economic Outcomes of Immigrants," Working Papers 1275, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
    2. Alicia Adsera & Mariola Pytlikova, 2012. "The role of language in shaping international migration," Norface Discussion Paper Series 2012014, Norface Research Programme on Migration, Department of Economics, University College London.
    3. Long, James E, 1980. "The Effect of Americanization on Earnings: Some Evidence for Women," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(3), pages 620-629, June.
    4. Seik Kim & Nalina Varanasi, "undated". "Labor Supply of Married Women in Credit-Constrained Households: Theory and Evidence," Working Papers UWEC-2010-01, University of Washington, Department of Economics.
    5. George J. Borjas, 2013. "The Slowdown in the Economic Assimilation of Immigrants: Aging and Cohort Effects Revisited Again," NBER Working Papers 19116, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Christopher Worswick, 1999. "Credit Constraints and the Labour Supply of Immigrant Families in Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 32(1), pages 152-170, February.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Mehtap Akguc & Ana Ferrer, 2015. "Educational Attainment and Labor Market Performance: An Analysis of Immigrants in France," Working Papers 1505, University of Waterloo, Department of Economics, revised Feb 2015.
    2. Gilles Grenier & Yi Zhang, 2015. "The ''Negative'' Assimilation of Immigrants - A Counter-example from the Canadian Labour Market," Working Papers 1504E, University of Ottawa, Department of Economics.
    3. Ana Ferrer, 2015. "Are married immigrant women secondary workers?," IZA World of Labor, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), pages 119-119.
    4. Kessler, Anke & Milligan, Kevin, 2017. "Acculturation, Education, and Gender Roles: Evidence from Canada," Annual Conference 2017 (Vienna): Alternative Structures for Money and Banking 168299, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    5. Adsera, Alicia & Ferrer, Ana, 2015. "The Effect of Linguistic Proximity on the Occupational Assimilation of Immigrant Men in Canada," IZA Discussion Papers 9499, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Gilles Grenier & Yi Zhang, 2016. "The “Negative” Assimilation of Immigrants: a Counter-Example from the Canadian Labor Market," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 37(3), pages 263-286, September.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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