Commuting Times: Is There Any Penalty for Immigrants?
The assimilation of immigrants and their impact on the labour market of the host country have become a growing subject of study in recent literature. This is a topic of particular interest in countries like Spain, where immigration has become one of the main challenges of government policy in recent years. The Madrid region has experienced one of the highest increases in the number of foreign residents between 1996 and 2007. The intensity of this inflow in such a short period of time has led to restrictions on the ability of the residential and labour market to absorb all these newcomers, limiting their choice set of available dwellings and jobs. In this paper the spatial mismatch hypothesis for the Madrid region is tested by exploring the relationship between immigrantsâ€™ residential location and employment accessibility as measured by commuting times. The findings reveal that immigrants from eastern Europe, Africa, Ecuador and Colombia are significantly more likely to experience higher commuting times when compared with natives. These differences in commuting times can be attributed to different preferences regarding dwelling and employment optimal decisions. However, they could also be seen as symptoms of residential segregation and the difficulties in employment accessibility experienced by immigrant groups.
Volume (Year): 47 (2010)
Issue (Month): 8 (July)
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