The Relative Social Mobility of the Second Generation in Europe and Its Determinants

Laurence Lessard-Phillips, University of Manchester
Tineke Fokkema, Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI)

The way in which social reproduction works for labor migrants and their children, the second generation, has rarely been studied in the European context. This is a very salient issue given that most labor migrants to Europe have had low occupational positioning and that their children have shown to have quite low occupational attainment. This paper will thus attempt to explore this issue by examining the level of inter-generational social mobility of the second generation in selected European cities and contrast it to that of their peers without an immigration background. Using data from “The Integration of the European Second Generation” (TIES) project, this paper shows that occupational mobility appears to be a feature of the second-generation experience in most of the TIES participating ‘countries’. This sheds a positive light on the integration story in the European context, yet with some shadows of social reproduction in some instances.

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Presented in Session 190: The Children of Immigrants in Comparative Perspective