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Unequal Opportunities for Young People with Immigrant Backgrounds in the Swedish Labour Market


  • Alireza Behtoui


This paper investigates labour-market performance for 'young people with immigrant backgrounds' and those 'born in Sweden with native-born parents' in the Swedish labour market. It focuses on young people who were aged 18-20 during 1990, and their labour-market status after 8 years, in 1998. The results indicate that young people of immigrant descent have lower annual wage income and are at higher risk of not being employed than those born in Sweden with native-born parents. Differences in human capital characteristics cannot explain these results. Other theories, which stress the effect of discriminatory behaviour and the power of social network composition, are discussed as alternative interpretations. Having one native-born parent is considered to be important to labour market success. However, having a native-born father rather than a native-born mother is associated with better labour-market achievement. Copyright 2004 CEIS, Fondazione Giacomo Brodolini and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Alireza Behtoui, 2004. "Unequal Opportunities for Young People with Immigrant Backgrounds in the Swedish Labour Market," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 18(4), pages 633-660, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:labour:v:18:y:2004:i:4:p:633-660

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. repec:zbw:rwirep:0057 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Stefanie Schurer, 2008. "Labour Market Outcomes of Second Generation Immigrants: How Heterogeneous Are They Really?," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2008n14, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
    3. Stefani Schurer, 2008. "Labour Market Outcomes of Second Generation Immigrants: How Heterogeneous Are They Really?," Ruhr Economic Papers 0057, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    4. Hedberg, Charlotta, 2008. "Entrance, Exit and Exclusion: Labour Market Flows of Foreign Born Adults in Swedish "Divided Cities"," SULCIS Working Papers 2008:1, Stockholm University, Linnaeus Center for Integration Studies - SULCIS.
    5. Gheasi, Masood & Nijkamp, Peter & Rietveld, Piet, 2015. "Wage Gaps between Native and Migrant Graduates of Higher Education Institutions in the Netherlands," IZA Discussion Papers 9353, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Katz, Katarina & Österberg, Torun, 2013. "Wages of childhood immigrants in Sweden – education, returns to education and overeducation," Working Paper Series 2013:8, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    7. Åslund, Olof & Nordström Skans, Oskar, 2005. "Will I see you at work? Ethnic workplace segregation in Sweden 1985–2002," Working Paper Series 2005:24, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    8. Gustafsson, Björn Anders & Katz, Katarina & Österberg, Torun, 2016. "Residential Segregation from Generation to Generation: Intergenerational Association in Socio-Spatial Context among Visible Minorities and the Majority Population in Metropolitan Sweden," IZA Discussion Papers 9837, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. repec:spr:lsprsc:v:10:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s12076-016-0174-6 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Tubadji, Annie & Gheasi, Masood & Nijkamp, Peter, 2014. "Immigrants' 'Ability' and Welfare as a Function of Cultural Diversity: Effect of Cultural Capital at Individual and Local Level," IZA Discussion Papers 8460, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    11. Polyakova, Evgeniya & Smirnykh, Larisa, 2016. "The earning differential between natives and individuals with immigrant background in Russia: The role of ethnicity," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 43, pages 52-72.

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