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Change and Continuity Among Minority Communities in Britain


  • Andreas Georgiadis
  • Alan Manning


There is widespread concern currently that some ethnic minority communities within Britain, especially Muslim, are not following the stereotypical immigrant path of economic and cultural assimilation into British society. Indeed, many seem to have the impression that differences between Muslims and non-Muslims are widening. In this paper we compare the two largest Muslim communities in Britain (Pakistanis and Bangladeshis) with other ethnic minorities to ask the questions 'are Muslims different?' and 'is their behaviour changing over time?' The indicators we look at are the gender gap in education, age at marriage, cohabitation and inter-marriage, fertility and the employment of women. In all these dimensions we find that the Muslim communities are different but we also find evidence of change. This is partly because those born in Britain generally have markedly different behaviours from those born in the country of origin, but also because there is change within both the UK-born and foreign-born communities. The evidence suggests there is, along almost all dimensions, a movement towards convergence in behaviour.

Suggested Citation

  • Andreas Georgiadis & Alan Manning, 2009. "Change and Continuity Among Minority Communities in Britain," CEP Discussion Papers dp0903, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:cepdps:dp0903

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Constant, Amelie F. & Gataullina, Liliya & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2009. "Ethnosizing immigrants," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 69(3), pages 274-287, March.
    2. Alicia Adsera & Barry Chiswick, 2007. "Are there gender and country of origin differences in immigrant labor market outcomes across European destinations?," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 20(3), pages 495-526, July.
    3. Deborah Wilson & Simon Burgess & Adam Briggs, 2011. "The dynamics of school attainment of England’s ethnic minorities," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 24(2), pages 681-700, April.
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    7. Monazza Aslam & Geeta Gandhi Kingdon, 2008. "Gender and household education expenditure in Pakistan," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(20), pages 2573-2591.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:kap:reveho:v:15:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s11150-015-9320-y is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Dominique Meurs & Patrick A. Puhani & Friederike Von Haaren-Giebel, 2017. "Number of siblings and educational choices of immigrant children: evidence from first- and second-generation immigrants," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 15(4), pages 1137-1158, December.
    3. Anzelika Zaiceva & Klaus Zimmermann, 2014. "Children, Kitchen, Church: does ethnicity matter?," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 83-103, March.
    4. Claire Adida & David Laitin & Marie-Anne Valfort, 2014. "Muslims in France: identifying a discriminatory equilibrium," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 27(4), pages 1039-1086, October.
    5. Yassine Khoudja & Lucinda Platt, 2016. "Labour market entries and exits of women from different origin countries in the UK," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1603, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
    6. Dominique Meurs & Patrick A. Puhani & Friederike von Haaren, 2015. "Number of Siblings and Educational Choices of Immigrant Children: Evidence from First- and Second-Generation Siblings," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 778, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    7. Kohler, Pierre, 2012. "Three essays on the economic and cultural integration of migrants in Switzerland: putting into perspective the influence of economic discrimination and of host society culture," MPRA Paper 38129, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Gustafsson, Björn Anders & Sai, Ding, 2014. "Why Is There No Income Gap Between the Hui Muslim Minority and the Han Majority in Rural Ningxia, China?," IZA Discussion Papers 7970, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. Giacomo De Luca & Jeroen Schokkaert & Jo Swinnen, 2011. "Cultural Differences, Assimilation and Behavior: Player Nationality and Penalties in Football," LICOS Discussion Papers 29711, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
    10. Alicia Adserà & Ana Ferrer, 2014. "Immigrants and Demography: Marriage, Divorce, and Fertility," Working Papers 1401, University of Waterloo, Department of Economics, revised Jan 2014.
    11. Pierre Kohler, 2012. "Education, Gender, Religion, Politics: What Priorities for Cultural Integration Policies in Switzerland?," IHEID Working Papers 06-2012, Economics Section, The Graduate Institute of International Studies.
    12. Anzelika Zaiceva & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 2010. "Do Ethnic Minorities "Stretch" Their Time?: Evidence from the UK Time Use Survey," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 999, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    13. de la Rica, Sara & Glitz, Albrecht & Ortega, Francesc, 2013. "Immigration in Europe: Trends, Policies and Empirical Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 7778, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    14. Khoudja, Yassine & Platt, Lucinda, 2016. "Labour market entries and exits of women from different origin countries in the UK," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 65384, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    15. Meurs, Dominique & Puhani, Patrick A. & Von Haaren, Friederike, 2015. "Direct and indirect effects of training vouchers for the unemployed," Economics Working Paper Series 1515, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science.
    16. Anzelika Zaiceva & Klaus Zimmermann, 2011. "Do ethnic minorities “stretch” their time? UK household evidence on multitasking," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 181-206, June.

    More about this item


    Immigration; assimilation;

    JEL classification:

    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration

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