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Ethnicity, Assimilation and Harassment in the Labor Market

  • Epstein, Gil S.

    ()

    (Bar-Ilan University)

  • Gang, Ira N.

    ()

    (Rutgers University)

We often observe minority ethnic groups at a disadvantage relative to the majority. Why is this and what can be done about it? Efforts made to assimilate, and time, are two elements working to bring the minority into line with the majority. A third element, the degree to which the majority welcomes the minority, also plays a role. We develop a simple theoretical model useful for examining the consequences for assimilation and harassment of growth in the minority population, time, and the role of political institutions. Over time, conflicts develop within the minority group as members exhibit different interests in assimilating and in maintaining their cultural identity. We discuss how this affects the minority’s position over time and the influence of public policy.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 3591.

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Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2008
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Research in Labor Economics, 29, 2009, 67-88
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3591
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  1. Bauer, Thomas & Epstein, Gil S & Gang, Ira, 2002. "Enclaves, Language and the Location Choice of Migrants," CEPR Discussion Papers 3527, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Constant, Amelie & Gataullina, Liliya & Zimmermann, Klaus F, 2006. "Ethnosizing Immigrants," CEPR Discussion Papers 5636, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Gang, Ira N. & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 1999. "Is Child like Parent? Educational Attainment and Ethnic Origin," IZA Discussion Papers 57, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Edward P. Lazear, 1995. "Culture and Language," NBER Working Papers 5249, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Blau, Francine D & Kahn, Lawrence M, 1997. "Swimming Upstream: Trends in the Gender Wage Differential in 1980s," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(1), pages 1-42, January.
  6. Gil Epstein & Shmuel Nitzan, 2006. "Reduced prizes and increased effort in contests," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 26(3), pages 447-453, June.
  7. Epstein, Gil S., 2000. "Labor Market Interactions Between Legal and Illegal Immigrants," IZA Discussion Papers 204, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Bhaumik, Sumon Kumar & Gang, Ira N. & Yun, Myeong-Su, 2006. "Ethnic conflict and economic disparity: Serbians and Albanians in Kosovo," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 754-773, December.
  9. Lindbeck, Assar & Snower, Dennis J., 1987. "Cooperation, Harassment, and Involuntary Unemployment: An Insider-Outsider Approach," CEPR Discussion Papers 196, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Rapoport, Hillel & Weiss, Avi, 2001. "The Optimal Size for a Minority," IZA Discussion Papers 284, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Kahanec, Martin, 2006. "Ethnic Specialization and Earnings Inequality: Why Being a Minority Hurts but Being a Big Minority Hurts More," IZA Discussion Papers 2050, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Alberto Alesina & Eliana La Ferrara, 2000. "Participation In Heterogeneous Communities," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 847-904, August.
  13. Chiswick, Barry R, 1978. "The Effect of Americanization on the Earnings of Foreign-born Men," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(5), pages 897-921, October.
  14. Anas, Alex, 2002. "Prejudice, exclusion, and compensating transfers: the economics of ethnic segregation," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 409-432, November.
  15. Duleep, Harriet & Regets, Mark, 2002. "The Elusive Concept of Immigrant Quality: Evidence from 1970-1990," IZA Discussion Papers 631, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  16. Bisin, A. & Verdier, T., 1999. "Beyond the Melting Pot : Cultural Transmission, Marriage, and the Evolution of Ethnic and Religious Traits," DELTA Working Papers 1999-10, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  17. Blau Francine D & Kahn Lawrence M, 2007. "The Gender Pay Gap," The Economists' Voice, De Gruyter, vol. 4(4), pages 1-6, June.
  18. Gang, Ira N & Rivera-Batiz, Francisco L, 1994. "Labor Market Effects of Immigration in the United States and Europe: Substitution vs. Complementarity," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 157-75.
  19. Mark Gradstein & Maurice Schiff, 2006. "The political economy of social exclusion, with implications for immigration policy," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 19(2), pages 327-344, June.
  20. James E. Rauch, 2001. "Business and Social Networks in International Trade," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1177-1203, December.
  21. Chiswick, Barry R & Miller, Paul M, 1996. "Ethnic Networks and Language Proficiency among Immigrants," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 9(1), pages 19-35, February.
  22. Epstein, Gil S & Gang, Ira, 2004. "Ethnic Networks and International Trade," CEPR Discussion Papers 4616, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  23. Chiswick, Barry R, 1977. "Sons of Immigrants: Are They at an Earnings Disadvantage?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(1), pages 376-80, February.
  24. Gradstein, Mark & Justman, Moshe, 2005. "The melting pot and school choice," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(5-6), pages 871-896, June.
  25. Chiswick, Barry R & Miller, Paul W, 1995. "The Endogeneity between Language and Earnings: International Analyses," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 13(2), pages 246-88, April.
  26. La Ferrara, Eliana & Alesina, Alberto, 2000. "Participation in Heterogeneous Communities," Scholarly Articles 4551796, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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