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Immigration Background and the Intergenerational Correlation in Education

  • Deborah Cobb-Clark


    (Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne; and Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA))

  • Trong-Ha Nguyen

    (Research School of Economics, Australian National University)

This paper analyzes the degree of intergenerational education mobility among immigrant and native-born youth in Australia. We find that young Australians from non-English-speaking background (NESB) immigrant families have an educational advantage over their English speaking background (ESB) immigrant and Australian-born peers. Moreover, while highlyeducated Australian-born mothers and fathers transfer separate and roughly equal educational advantages to their children, outcomes for ESB (NESB) youth are most closely linked to the educational attainment of their fathers (mothers). On balance, intergenerational mobility in families with two highly-educated parents appears to be much the same for Australian-born and ESB families and is somewhat greater for NESB families. Finally, the greater importance that NESB mothers attribute to education appears to mitigate the educational penalty associated with socio-economic disadvantage.

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Paper provided by Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne in its series Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series with number wp2010n09.

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Length: 36 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iae:iaewps:wp2010n09
Contact details of provider: Postal: Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne, Victoria 3010 Australia
Phone: +61 3 8344 2100
Fax: +61 3 8344 2111
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  1. Christian Dustmann, 2005. "Intergenerational Mobility and Return Migration: Comparing sons of foreign and native born fathers," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0505, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  2. David Card & John DiNardo & Eugena Estes, 1998. "The More Things Change: Immigrants and the Children of Immigrants in the 1940's, the 1970's, and the 1990's," JCPR Working Papers 30, Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research.
  3. Algan, Yann & Dustmann, Christian & Glitz, Albrecht & Manning, Alan, 2009. "The Economic Situation of First- and Second-Generation Immigrants in France, Germany, and the UK," IZA Discussion Papers 4514, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Philipp Bauer & Regina Riphahn, 2007. "Heterogeneity in the intergenerational transmission of educational attainment: evidence from Switzerland on natives and second-generation immigrants," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 20(1), pages 121-148, February.
  5. Brian Nolan, 2010. "Promoting the Well-Being of Immigrant Youth," Working Papers 201017, Geary Institute, University College Dublin.
  6. van Ours, Jan C. & Veenman, Justus, 2001. "The Educational Attainment of Second Generation Immigrants in The Netherlands," IZA Discussion Papers 297, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Jennifer Glick & Michael White, 2003. "academic trajectories of immigrant youths: Analysis within and across cohorts," Demography, Springer, vol. 40(4), pages 759-783, November.
  8. Teresa Casey & Christian Dustmann, 2005. "Intergenerational transmission of language capital and economic outcomes," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 0506, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  9. Philipp C. Bauer & Regina T. Riphahn, 2009. "Age at School Entry and Intergenerational Educational Mobility," CESifo Working Paper Series 2541, CESifo Group Munich.
  10. Hoyt Bleakley & Aimee Chin, 2008. "What Holds Back the Second Generation?: The Intergenerational Transmission of Language Human Capital Among Immigrants," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(2), pages 267-298.
  11. Anh T. Le, 2009. "Entry into University: Are The Children of Immigrants Disadvantaged?," Economics Discussion / Working Papers 09-01, The University of Western Australia, Department of Economics.
  12. Helena Skyt Nielsen & Michael Rosholm & Nina Smith & Leif Husted, 2003. "The school-to-work transition of 2 nd generation immigrants in Denmark," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 16(4), pages 755-786, November.
  13. Ira N. Gang & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 1999. "Is Child Like Parent? Educational Attainment and Ethnic Origin," Departmental Working Papers 199614, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  14. Arthur Sweetman & Gordon Dicks, 1999. "Education and Ethnicity in Canada: An Intergenerational Perspective," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 34(4), pages 668-696.
  15. George J. Borjas, 1991. "Ethnic Capital and Intergenerational Mobility," NBER Working Papers 3788, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Chen, Wen-Hao & Aydemir, Abdurrahman & Corak, Miles, 2008. "Intergenerational Education Mobility Among the Children of Canadian Immigrants," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2008316e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
  17. Joachim R. Frick & Gert G. Wagner, 2000. "Short Term Living Conditions and Long Term Prospects of Immigrant Children in Germany," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 229, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
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