Educational Selectivity and Immigrants’ Labor Market Performance in Germany

Monday, 16 July 2018: 10:45
Oral Presentation
Regine SCHMIDT, University of Bamberg, Germany
Having experienced ongoing immigration since the early 1960ies, Germany yields an important case for the investigation of labor market incorporation of immigrants’. Thus, a large body of research examined ethnic inequalities in the labor market integration of immigrants’. In the German context it was often assumed that immigrants’ were negatively selected in terms of their human capital. We want to investigate this assumption and raise the question how educational selectivity on an individual level affects immigrants’ integration into the German labor market. Based on arguments which specify how selectivity might translate into migrants’ labor market performance - for example via individual differences in motivation, skills and competences or (cultural) resources - we empirically examine this relationship. Combining data from the IAB-SOEP Migration Sample with international data on educational attainment distributions from 1950 to 2010 in 146 countries (Barro/Lee 2012) we create a measure of immigrants’ relative level of educational attainment. This index captures the individual position in the educational distribution of the country of origin. Based on previous analyses with cross-sectional data on different Western European destination countries we expect the following results: First, immigrants’ who came to Germany are mostly positive selected in terms of education. Second, regarding occupational status, immigrants’ profit from a favorable position in the educational distribution of the country of origin. Analyses on longitudinal data with detailed information about the German labor market should enable us to gain further insights into how the positive effect of educational selectivity on labor market outcomes is influenced by labor market characteristics.