Pitfalls of Immigrant Inclusion into the European Welfare State

31 Pages Posted: 8 Jan 2012

See all articles by Martin Kahanec

Martin Kahanec

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

Anna Myunghee Kim

affiliation not provided to SSRN

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

Abstract

This paper's main purpose is to gauge immigrants' demand for social assistance and services and identify the key barriers to social and labor market inclusion of immigrants in the European Union. The data from an online primary survey of experts from organizations working on immigrant integration in the EU is analyzed using simple comparative statistical methods; the robustness of the results is tested by means of Logit and ordered Logit statistical models. We find that the general public in Europe has rather negative attitudes towards immigrants. Although the business community views immigrants somewhat less negatively, barriers to immigrant labor market inclusion identified include language and human capital gaps, a lack of recognition of foreign qualifications, discrimination, intransparent labor markets and institutional barriers such as legal restrictions for foreign citizens. Exclusion from higher education, housing and the services of the financial sector aggravate these barriers. Changes in the areas of salaried employment, education, social insurance, mobility and attitudes are seen as most desired by members of ethnic minorities. The current economic downturn is believed to have increased the importance of active inclusion policies, especially in the areas of employment and education. These results appear to be robust with respect to a number of characteristics of respondents and their organizations.

Keywords: ethnic minorities, migration, labor market integration, economic crisis, enlarged European Union, welfare state

JEL Classification: J15, J71, J78

Suggested Citation

Kahanec, Martin and Kim, Anna Myunghee and Zimmermann, Klaus F., Pitfalls of Immigrant Inclusion into the European Welfare State. IZA Discussion Paper No. 6260. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1981216

Martin Kahanec (Contact Author)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
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Germany

Central European University ( email )

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Budapest, H-1051
Hungary

Central European Labour Studies Institute ( email )

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Bratislava, 82109
Slovakia

HOME PAGE: http://www.celsi.sk

Anna Myunghee Kim

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

No Address Available

Klaus F. Zimmermann

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

Tiergartenstr. 17
D-69121 Heidelberg
Germany

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