Human Capital and Interethnic Marriage Decisions

12 Pages Posted: 6 Jan 2012

See all articles by Delia Furtado

Delia Furtado

University of Connecticut - Department of Economics; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: January 2012

Abstract

Common explanations for the generally negative relationship between education and ethnic endogamy include (1) education makes immigrants and their children better able to adapt to native culture thereby eliminating the need for a same‐ethnicity spouse and (2) education raises the likelihood of leaving ethnic enclaves, thereby decreasing the probability of meeting potential same‐ethnicity spouses. This paper considers a third option, the role of assortative matching on education. If education distributions differ by ethnicity, then spouse‐searchers may trade similarities in ethnicity for similarities in education when choosing spouses. U.S. Census data on second‐generation immigrants provide strong support for the assortative matching mechanism.

JEL Classification: J12, I21, J61

Suggested Citation

Furtado, Delia, Human Capital and Interethnic Marriage Decisions (January 2012). Economic Inquiry, Vol. 50, Issue 1, pp. 82-93, 2012. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1980539 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1465-7295.2010.00345.x

Delia Furtado (Contact Author)

University of Connecticut - Department of Economics ( email )

365 Fairfield Way, U-1063
Storrs, CT 06269-1063
United States

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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