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Return migrant status and employment in Finland

  • Jan Saarela
  • Fjalar Finnäs
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    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the relative employment levels of return migrants in Finland with regard to their re-adaptation into the labour market. Design/methodology/approach – Longitudinal census data distinguished Finns who had lived abroad and returned to Finland. These return migrants are compared with non-migrants with regard to employment levels, using logistic regression models that account for sex, age, education, mother tongue and place of residence. Findings – Both male and female return migrants have odds of employment that are only about half those of their non-migrant counterparts. The employment differential is stable over time and, consequently, not particularly sensitive to changes in the macroeconomic environment. Relative employment rates of migrants with short periods abroad and long periods in the home country are somewhat higher than those of other migrants, but still lower than those of non-migrants. Difficulties in readapting into Finnish society are consequently associated with personal characteristics that cannot be observed explicitly but are apparently associated with job-finding probability. Practical implications – Considering that Finland at present has no explicit measures directed towards return migrants, it is suggested that this group should be given more policy attention. Originality/value – The paper provides quantitative evidence that Finnish migrants have substantial difficulties in finding employment in the home country labour market subsequent to return migration, and that these problems cannot be attributed to structural factors.

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    Article provided by Emerald Group Publishing in its journal International Journal of Manpower.

    Volume (Year): 30 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 5 (September)
    Pages: 489-506

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    Handle: RePEc:eme:ijmpps:v:30:y:2009:i:5:p:489-506
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