A Theoretical Discussion and Empirical Analysis of Second Generations’ Education and Labour Market Outcomes in England and Wales

48 Pages Posted: 11 Jun 2019

See all articles by Carolina V. Zuccotti

Carolina V. Zuccotti

European University Institute - Migration Policy Centre

Lucinda Platt

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE)

Date Written: May 2019

Abstract

Research on ethnic penalties in the labour market now contains a paradox, which is exemplified in the UK: the second generation performs relatively well in education, despite predominantly lower social class origins, while labour market disadvantage persists. Taking account of social class background leads to a picture of ethnic minority advantage in education, at the same time as it helps to explain disadvantage in the labour market. This paper engages with this paradox, and argues research needs to account for ethnic minority advantage as well as disadvantage. We develop a framework for ethnic minorities’ achievement in education based on two mechanisms: social class misallocation or immigrant advantage; and discuss the extent to which we might expect to see such advantage replicated in labour market outcomes. Drawing on a longitudinal study of England and Wales spanning 40 years and encompassing one per cent of the population, we analyse education and labour market outcomes for men and women from four ethnic minority groups compared to white British, whose social origins were observed in childhood. We find clear evidence of educational advantage across social origins, which we relate to the immigrant advantage mechanism. We find this advantage is not reflected in labour market outcomes. We consider the implications for standard approaches to modelling ethnic penalties in the labour market.

Keywords: ethnic penalties, second generation, educational attainment, labour market outcomes, social mobility, England and Wales

Suggested Citation

Zuccotti, Carolina V. and Platt, Lucinda, A Theoretical Discussion and Empirical Analysis of Second Generations’ Education and Labour Market Outcomes in England and Wales (May 2019). Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies Research Paper RSCAS 2019/38, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3401880 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3401880

Carolina V. Zuccotti (Contact Author)

European University Institute - Migration Policy Centre ( email )

Villa Malafrasca
Via Boccaccio 151
Florence, I-50133
Italy

Lucinda Platt

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) ( email )

Houghton Street
London, WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom

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