Measuring Ethnic Identity and its Impact on Economic Behavior

25 Pages Posted: 31 Oct 2007

See all articles by Amelie F. Constant

Amelie F. Constant

Princeton University; UNU-MERIT; CESifo

Klaus F. Zimmermann

Global Labor Organization (GLO); UNU-MERIT; Maastricht University, Department of Economics; Free University Berlin; University of Bonn; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); Journal of Population Economics

Date Written: September 2007

Abstract

The paper advocates for a new measure of the ethnic identity of migrants, models its determinants and explores its explanatory power for various types of their economic performance. The ethnosizer, a measure of the intensity of a person's ethnic identity, is constructed from information on the following elements: language, culture, societal interaction, history of migration, and ethnic self-identification. A two-dimensional concept of the ethnosizer classifies migrants into four states: integration, assimilation, separation and marginalization. The ethnosizer largely depends on pre-migration characteristics. Empirical evidence studying economic behavior like work participation, earnings and housing decisions demonstrates the significant relevance of ethnic identity for economic outcomes.

Keywords: ethnicity, ethnic identity, acculturation, migrant assimilation, migrant integration, work, cultural economics

JEL Classification: F22, J15, J16, Z10

Suggested Citation

Constant, Amelie F. and Zimmermann, Klaus F., Measuring Ethnic Identity and its Impact on Economic Behavior (September 2007). IZA Discussion Paper No. 3063, SOEPpaper, No. 48, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1025875

Amelie F. Constant

Princeton University ( email )

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Princeton, NJ 08544
United States

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UNU-MERIT ( email )

Keizer Karelplein 19
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CESifo ( email )

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Klaus F. Zimmermann (Contact Author)

Global Labor Organization (GLO) ( email )

Bonn
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://https://glabor.org/

UNU-MERIT ( email )

Keizer Karelplein 19
Maastricht, 6211TC
Netherlands

Maastricht University, Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, 6200MD
Netherlands

University of Bonn

Postfach 2220
Bonn, D-53012
Germany

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Journal of Population Economics

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D-69121 Heidelberg
Germany

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