Social Determinants of Labour Market Status of Ethnic Minorities in Britain

38 Pages Posted: 8 Apr 2009

See all articles by Martin Kahanec

Martin Kahanec

IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Central European University; Central European Labour Studies Institute

Mariapia Mendola

University of Milan - Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano (LdA); Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Department of Economics, Management and Statistics (DEMS); Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Center for European Studies (CefES)

Date Written: June 1, 2008

Abstract

The labor market behavior of ethnic communities in advanced societies and the social determinants of their labor market outcomes are important empirical issues with significant policy consequences. We use direct information on social interactions within multiple-origin ethnic minorities in England and Wales to investigate the ways different network-based social ties influence individual employment outcomes. We find that (i) 'strong ties', measured by contacts with parents and children away, increase the probability of self-employment, while 'weak social ties', measured by engagement in voluntary organizations, are more likely to channel members of ethnic minorities into paid employment; (ii) 'ethnic networks', measured by interactions between individuals of the same ethnicity, are positively associated with the likelihood to be self-employed, while engagement in mixed or non-ethnic social networks facilitates paid employment among minority individuals. These findings hint at a positive role of social integration in the host society on labor market outcomes of ethnic minority groups.

Keywords: labour market, self employment, ethnic minorities, social ties, ethnic networks

JEL Classification: J7, J15, J21

Suggested Citation

Kahanec, Martin and Mendola, Mariapia, Social Determinants of Labour Market Status of Ethnic Minorities in Britain (June 1, 2008). Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano Development Studies Working Paper No. 253. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1374412 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1374412

Martin Kahanec

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

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Central European University ( email )

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Central European Labour Studies Institute ( email )

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Mariapia Mendola (Contact Author)

University of Milan - Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano (LdA) ( email )

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Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Department of Economics, Management and Statistics (DEMS) ( email )

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Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca - Center for European Studies (CefES)

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