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Immigrant Adjustment in France and Impacts on the Natives


  • Constant, Amelie F.

    () (Temple University)


The purpose of this paper is to study the immigrant performance in France and the impacts on the natives by drawing on research findings from the existing academic literature on the economics of French migration. The research questions are: how do immigrants fare with respect to wages, employment, and occupational choices; are immigrants in competition with the natives, and do they harm or improve the labour market situation of natives; does the presence of immigrants alter the internal migration flows of natives; and what is the role of the business cycle and natives’ sentiments on the immigrant flows? The studies reviewed showed that while some immigrant groups are faring well, assimilation and intergenerational mobility has not taken place to a full extent. Overall, immigrants hardly affect the wages and employment levels of natives, and there are no significant displacement effects. However, the social and cultural distance between immigrants and natives is crucial in natives’ sentiments. Moreover, business cycles and labour market conditions play a significant role on migration. In France of 2000, there remains a significant gap between policy goals and outcomes, indicating that integration through cultural and political venues alone is not enough but should be combined with a systematic treatment of the needs of the labour market. Lastly, there is substantial need for further studies on immigrants in France.

Suggested Citation

  • Constant, Amelie F., 2003. "Immigrant Adjustment in France and Impacts on the Natives," IZA Discussion Papers 866, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp866

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    Cited by:

    1. Martin Kahanec & Anzelika Zaiceva & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 2011. "Ethnic Minorities in the European Union: An Overview," Chapters,in: Ethnic Diversity in European Labor Markets, chapter 1 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    2. Akguc, Mehtap & Ferrer, Ana, 2015. "Educational Attainment and Labor Market Performance: an Analysis of Immigrants in France," CLSSRN working papers clsrn_admin-2015-11, Vancouver School of Economics, revised 07 Jul 2015.
    3. Amelie F. Constant & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 2013. "Immigrants, ethnic identities and the nation-state," Chapters,in: International Handbook on the Economics of Migration, chapter 14, pages 259-275 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    4. Xin Meng & Dominique Meurs, 2009. "Intermarriage, language, and economic assimilation process: A case study of France," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 30(1/2), pages 127-144, March.

    More about this item


    impact on natives; intergenerational mobility; immigrant workers; earnings assimilation; occupational choice; human capital; public policy; international migration; business cycle; native sentiments; France;

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J18 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Public Policy
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion

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