The United States and Canada: Intergenerational social mobility among immigrants and their native-born children
Authors: Arthur Sweetman and Khuong Truong
This chapter reviews the academic literature on new immigrants’ intergenerational educational and labour market integration in the United States and Canada, and presents new findings. It begins with a discussion of American and Canadian immigration history, and then addresses the intergenerational transmission of educational outcomes. Particular attention is paid to students from disadvantaged backgrounds, especially minority ethnic-group students. The discussion points to language deficiencies as a major drawback, and outlines possible reasons for the relatively slow integration of the Hispanic community into higher levels of education in the United States. The chapter then turns to labour market outcomes in both countries, examining participation rates and earnings gaps for adult immigrants, immigrants who arrived as children, the children of immigrants and, as a comparison group, children with two native-born parents. Book summary: Previous OECD and EU work has shown that even native-born children with immigrant parents face persistent disadvantage in the education system, the school-to-work transition and the labour market. To which degree are these linked with their immigration background, i.e. with the issues faced by their parents? Complementing the report Catching Up? Intergenerational Mobility and Children of Immigrants (OECD 2017), this publication presents seven in-depth country case studies. The countries and regions covered in this publication are Austria, the European Union, France, Germany, the Netherlands, North America and Sweden.
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