Negative and Positive Assimilation, Skill Transferability, and Linguistic Distance
This paper synthesizes two models of immigrant assimilation: “positive assimilation” if earnings rise with duration as destination-relevant skills are acquired and “negative assimilation” if immigrants with highly transferable skills experience declining earnings as their economic rent diminishes. Hypotheses are developed and tested with earnings of adult male immigrants in the 2000 U.S. Census. “Linguistic distance” from English of an immigrant’s mother tongue is the index of skill transferability. Only immigrants from English-speaking developed countries experience negative assimilation. Immigrants from other countries experience positive assimilation, the degree of assimilation increasing with linguistic distance.
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- Barry R. Chiswick & Paul W. Miller, 1999.
"Immigrant Earnings: Language Skills, Linguistic Concentrations and the Business Cycle,"
University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State
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- Chiswick, Barry R. & Miller, Paul W., 2010.
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SULCIS Working Papers
2010:9, Stockholm University Linnaeus Center for Integration Studies - SULCIS.
- Barry R. Chiswick & Paul W Miller, 2011. "The Negative Assimilation of Immigrants: A Special Case," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 64(3), pages 502-525, April.
- Chiswick, Barry R. & Miller, Paul W., 2008. "The "Negative" Assimilation of Immigrants: A Special Case," IZA Discussion Papers 3563, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn & Kerry L. Papps, 2008.
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NBER Working Papers
14387, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Blau, Francine D. & Kahn, Lawrence M. & Papps, Kerry L., 2008. "Gender, Source Country Characteristics and Labor Market Assimilation among Immigrants: 1980-2000," IZA Discussion Papers 3725, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Chiswick, Barry R. & Miller, Paul W., 2004. "Linguistic Distance: A Quantitative Measure of the Distance Between English and Other Languages," IZA Discussion Papers 1246, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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