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Growing Up in Ethnic Enclaves: Language Proficiency and Educational Attainment of Immigrant Children

Author

Listed:
  • Danzer, Alexander M.

    () (Catholic University of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt)

  • Feuerbaum, Carsten

    () (Catholic University of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt)

  • Piopiunik, Marc

    () (Ifo Institute for Economic Research)

  • Woessmann, Ludger

    () (Ifo Institute for Economic Research)

Abstract

Does a high regional concentration of immigrants of the same ethnicity affect immigrant children’s acquisition of host-country language skills and educational attainment? We exploit the exogenous placement of guest workers from five ethnicities across German regions during the 1960s and 1970s in a model with region and ethnicity fixed effects. Our results indicate that exposure to a higher own-ethnic concentration impairs immigrant children’s host-country language proficiency and increases school dropout. A key mediating factor for this effect is parents’ lower speaking proficiency in the host-country language, whereas inter-ethnic contacts with natives and economic conditions do not play a role.

Suggested Citation

  • Danzer, Alexander M. & Feuerbaum, Carsten & Piopiunik, Marc & Woessmann, Ludger, 2018. "Growing Up in Ethnic Enclaves: Language Proficiency and Educational Attainment of Immigrant Children," IZA Discussion Papers 11608, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp11608
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    immigrant children; ethnic concentration; language; education; guest workers;

    JEL classification:

    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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