Ethnic Inequality in Employment? Family Background and Human Capital Effects on Labor Market Outcomes of Moroccan and Turkish Second-Generation Migrants in the Netherlands

Pablo Gracia, University of Amsterdam
Herman van de Werfhorst, University of Amsterdam
Lucia M. Vazquez, Population Council Mexico

We use the 2009/10 Wave of the ‘Netherlands Longitudinal Life-Course Study’ to analyze how Moroccan and Turkish second-generation migrants fare in the Dutch labor market. Unlike in the majority of related studies, we consider in the analyses a rich variety of measures of family background and skills. Results show strong ethnic inequalities in employment participation. Among men, these inequalities persist when controlling for family background, education, and skills, while for women such ethnic inequalities are explained by family background and linguistic proficiency, but not by education. We find much weaker ethnic inequalities in occupational status. Men’s occupational status is substantially low only among Turkish second-generation migrants, which is explained by contextual factors. Women’s occupational status does not differ across ethnic groups, and ethnic minorities actually achieve a higher occupational status than women from Dutch origins with similar characteristics. Implications for understanding ethnic stratification in the labor market are discussed.

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 Presented in Session P8. Economy, Labor Force, Education, and Inequality/Gender, Race and Ethnicity