Immigration restrictions and second-generation cultural assimilation: theory and quasi-experimental evidence

Original Paper
  • 51 Downloads

Abstract

We study the effects of immigration restrictions on the cultural assimilation of second-generation migrants. In our theoretical model, when mobility is free, individuals with a stronger taste for their native culture migrate temporarily. When immigration is restricted, however, these individuals are incentivized to relocate permanently. Permanent emigrants procreate in the destination country and convey their cultural traits to the second generation, who will therefore find assimilation harder. We test this prediction by using the 1973 immigration ban in Germany (Anwerbestopp) as a quasi-experiment. Since the ban only concerned immigrants from countries outside the European Economic Community, they act as a treatment group. According to our estimates, the Anwerbestopp has reduced the cultural assimilation of the second generation. This result demonstrated robustness to several checks. We conclude that restrictive immigration policies may have the unintended consequence of delaying the intergenerational process of cultural assimilation.

Keywords

Second-generation immigration Intergenerational assimilation Cultural transmission Social and economic stratification 

JEL Classification

D91 F22 J15 K37 Z13 

Notes

Acknowledgments

We are grateful to the Editor-in-Chief, Klaus F. Zimmermann, and two anonymous referees who helped us to greatly improve our paper with their remarks. We acknowledge participants to the XIII Brucchi Luchino Workshop, the IX CSEF-IGIER Symposium on Economics and Institutions, and the Petralia Applied Economics Workshop. We also thank Toke Aidt, Alberto Bennardo, Gaetano Bloise, Michel Beine, François Bourguignon, Vincenzo Carrieri, Andrew Clark, Francesco Magris, Claire Naiditch, Dimitri Paolini, Eleonora Patacchini, Nicola Persico, Giovanni Pica, Vincenzo Pierro, Shanker Satyanath, and Filippo Taddei. The usual disclaimer applies.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interests

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

References

  1. Abramitzky R, Boustan LP, Eriksson K (2014) A nation of immigrants: assimilation and economic outcomes in the age of mass migration. J Political Econ 122(3):467–506CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Aguirre BE, Saenz R, Hwang SS (1989) Discrimination and assimilation and ethnic competition perspectives. Soc Sci Q 70(3):594–606Google Scholar
  3. Akgunduz A (2008) Labour Migration From Turkey to Western Europe, 1960-1974, Asgate Publishing Ltd.Google Scholar
  4. Alba R, Nee V (2003) Remaking the American Mainstream. Harvard University Press, CambridgeCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Algan Y, Bisin A, Manning A, Verdier T (eds) (2012) Cultural assimilation of Immigrants in Europe. Oxford University Press, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  6. Angelini V, Casi L, Corazzini L (2015) Life satifaction of immigrants: does cultural assimilation matter? J Popul Econ 28(3):817–844CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Amuedo-Dorantes C, Puttitanun T, Martinez-Donate A (2013) How do tougher immigration measures impact unauthorized immigrants? Demography 50 (3):1067–1091CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Amuedo-Dorantes C, Lopez MJ (2015) Falling through the cracks? grade retention and school dropout among children of likely unauthorized immigrants. Amer Econ Rev 105(5):598–603CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Baines DE (1991) Emigration from europe 1815-1930. Macmillan, BasingstokeCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Beine M, Parsons CR (2015) Climatic factors as determinants of international migration. Scand J Econ 117(2):723–767CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Bisin A, Verdier T (2000) Beyond the melting pot: cultural transmission, marriage and the evolution of ethnic and religious traits. Q J Econ 3:955–988CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Bisin A, Verdier T (2010) The economics of cultural transmission and socialization. In: Handbook of Social Economics. Elsevier, edited by Benhabib, J, Bisin, A, Jackson, MO, vol 1, chapter 9, pp 339–416Google Scholar
  13. Blau FD (2015) Immigrants and gender roles: assimilation vs culture. IZA J Migration 4:23CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Borjas GJ (1993) The intergenerational mobility of immigrants. Journal of Labour Economics 11(1):113–135CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Borjas GJ (1994) The economics of immigration. J Econ Lit 32:1667–1717Google Scholar
  16. Borjas GJ (1999) Economic research on the determinants of immigration, World Bank Technical Paper no. 438Google Scholar
  17. Borodak D, Tichit A (2013) Should we stay or should we go? irregular migration and the duration of stay: the case of moldovan migrants. Migr Stud 1(3):1–33CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Bruquetas-Callejo M, Garcés-Mascarenas B, Penninx R, Scholten P (2011) Policymaking related to immigration and integration. the dutch case. Chapter 4 in Zincone, G, Penninx, R and Borkert, M (eds), Migration policy making in Europe: the dynamics of actors and contexts in past and present. Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam, pp 129–164Google Scholar
  19. Cameron AC, Miller DL (2015) A practitioner’s guide to cluster-robust inference. J Human Resour 50(2):317–372CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Card D, Dustmann C, Preston I (2012) Immigration, wages and compositional amenities. J Eur Econ Assoc 10(1):78–119CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Carliner G (1980) Wages, earnings and hours of first, second and third generation of American males. Economic Inquiry 18(1):87–102CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Casey T, Dustmann C (2010) Immigrants identity, economic outcomes and the transmission of identity across generations. Econ J 120(542):31–51CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Chiswick BR (1978) The effect of Americanization on the earnings of foreign-born men. Journal of Political Economy 86(5):897–921CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Coniglio N, Pesce G (2015) Climate variability and international migration: an empirical analysis. Environ Dev Econ 20(04):434–468CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Constant A, Gataullina L, Zimmermann K (2009) Ethnosizing immigrants. J Econ Behav Organ 69(3):274–287CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Constant A, Zimmermann K (2011) Circular migration: counts of exits and years away from the host country. Popul Res Policy Rev 30:495–515CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Constant A, Nottmeyer O, Zimmermann K (2012) Cultural assimilation in Germany. In: Algan Y, Bisin A, Manning A, Verdier T. (eds). chapter 3, pp 69–124Google Scholar
  28. Constant A, Nottmeyer O, Zimmermann K (2013) The economics of circular migration. In: Constant A, Zimmermann K (eds) International Handbook on the Economics of Migration. chapter 3. Edward Elgar, pp 55–74Google Scholar
  29. Drabo A, Linguère Mously M (2015) Natural disasters, migration and education: an empirical analysis in developing countries. Environ Dev Econ 20 (06):767–796CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Dustmann C (1996) The social assimilation of immigrants. J Popul Econ 9 (1):37–54CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Dustmann C (1997) Return migration, uncertainty and precautionary savings. J Dev Econ 52:295–316CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Dustmann C, Kirchkamp O (2002) The optimal migration duration and activity choice after re-migration. J Dev Econ 67(2):351–372CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Epstein G (2007) Extremism within the family. J Popul Econ 20(3):707–715CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Estrada EP, Tsai YM, Chandler CR (2008) Assimilation and discriminatory perception and experiences: the case of the hispanics in the United States. Soc Sci J 45(4):673–681CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Finch B, Kolody B, Vega W (2000) Perceived discrimination and depression among mexican-origin adults in california. J Health Soc Behav 41(3):295–313CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Firth D (1993) Bias reduction of maximum likelihood estimates. Biometrika 80:27–38CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Herberg W (1955) Protestant-Catholic-Jew. Doubleday), New YorkGoogle Scholar
  38. Hughes M, Thomas ME (1998) The continuing significance of race revisited: a study of race, class and quality of life in america, 1972 to 1996. Amer Sociol Rev 63 (6):785–795CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Gee GC, Spencer M, Chen J, Yip T, Takeuchi DT (2007) The association between self-reported racial discrimination and 12-Month DSM-IV mental disorders among asians americans nationwide. Soc Sci Med 64(10):1984–1996CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Hill KJ (1987) Immigrant decisions concerning duration of stay and migratory frequency. J Dev Econ 25:221–234CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Jaitman L, Machin S (2013) Crime and immigration: new evidence from England and Wales. Iza Journal of Migration:2–19Google Scholar
  42. Ioannides Y, Zanella G (2008) Searching for the best neighborhood: mobility and social interactions, working paper no 533. Department of Economics. Università di Siena, SienaGoogle Scholar
  43. Jennissen RPW (2004) Macro-economic determinants of international migration in Europe. Rozenberg Publishers, AmsterdamGoogle Scholar
  44. Kirdar MG (2012) Estimating the impact of immigrants on the host country social security system when return migration is an endogenous choice. Int Econ Rev 53(2):453–486CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Kossoudji SA (1992) Playing cat and mouse at the U.S.-Mexican border. Demography 29(2):159–180CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Kremer M (2000) Sarychev A. mimeo, Harvard University, HarvardGoogle Scholar
  47. Li S (2016) The determinants of mexican migrants’ duration in the united states: family composition, psychic costs and human capital. IZA J Migr 5:2CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Lindert AT, Korzilius H, Van de Vijver FJR, Kroon S, Arends-Toth J (2008) Perceived discrimination and acculturation among iranian refugees in the netherlands. Int J Intercult Relat 32:578–588CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Magris F, Russo G (2009) Selective immigration policies, human capital accumulation and migration duration in infinite horizon. Res Econ 63:114–126CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Massey DS, Pren KA (2012) Unintended consequences of us immigration policy: explaining the post-1965 surge from latin america. Popul Dev Rev 38(1):1–29CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Massey DS, Durand J, Pren KA (2016) Why border enforcement backfired. Amer J Sociol 121(5):1557–1600CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Mehrlander U (1985) Second generation migrants in the federal republic of germany. In: Rosemary R (ed) Guests Come to Stay. West View Press, BoulderGoogle Scholar
  53. Naude W (2009) Natural disasters and international migration from sub-saharian africa. Migr Lett 6(2):165–176Google Scholar
  54. OECD (2007) Standardised Statistics on Immigrant Inflows: Results, Sources and Methods, by Fron, P, Lemaitre, G, Liebig, T, Thoreau, C, available at https://www.oecd.org/els/mig/38832099.pdf
  55. O’Rourke KH (2009) The Era of free migration: lessons for today. In: Sobel A (ed) Challenges of globalization. chapter 4. Routledge, pp 58–77Google Scholar
  56. Patacchini E, Zenou Y (2011) Neighborhood effects and parental involvement in the intergenerational transmission of education. J Reg Sci 51(5):987–1013CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Patacchini E, Zenou Y (2016) Social networks and parental behavior in the intergenerational transmission of religion. Quant Econ 7(3):969–995CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Pew Research Center (2013) Second-generation Americans. Washington, D.C 1615 L St. N.W., Suite 700Google Scholar
  59. Porter E (2003) Tighter Border Yields Odd Result: More Illegals Stay, The Wall Street JournalGoogle Scholar
  60. Portes A, Rumbaut RG (2001) Legacies-the story of the immigrant second generation. University of California Press and Russell Sage Foundation, CAGoogle Scholar
  61. Razin A (2012) Migration into the welfare state: tax and migration competition, keynote address given at the IIPF 2012 CongressGoogle Scholar
  62. Reichert J, Massey D, Jones R (1984) Patterns of US migration from a mexican town. In: Patterns of undocumented migration: Mexico and the United States. Rowman and Allanheld, Totowa, pp 93–109Google Scholar
  63. Rumbaut RG (1994) The crucible within: ethnic identity, self-esteem, and segmented assimilation among children of immigrants. Int Migr Rev 28(4):748–794CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Schueller S (2015) Parental ethnic identity and educational attainment of second-generation immigrants. J Popul Econ 28(4):965–1004CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. United Nations (1991) Demographic Yearbook 1989. United Nations, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  66. Van Spanje J (2010) Contagious parties. Party Polit 16(5):563–586CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Vedder P, Van de Vijver FJS, Liebkind K (2006) Predicting immigrant youth’s adaptation across countries and ethnocultural groups. In: Berry JW, Phinney JS, Sam DL, Vedder P (eds) Immigrant youth in cultural transition: acculturation, identity and adaptation across national contexts (143-166). Mahwah, NJGoogle Scholar
  68. Vega WA, Rumbaut RG (1991) Ethnic minorities and mental health. Ann Rev Sociol 17:351–383CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Velling J (1994) The determinants of family reunification among german guest-workers. In: Burkhauser RV, Wagner GG (eds) Vierteljahrsheft 1/2. Deustsches Institute Fur Wirtschftorschung, Berlin, pp 126–132Google Scholar
  70. Verkuyten M, Nekuee S (1999) Subjective well-being, discrimination and cultural conflict. Iranians living in the Netherlands. Soc Indic Res 47:281–306CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Willekens F (1984) Comparability of migration, utopia or reality? Nidi working paper n.47Google Scholar
  72. Zimmermann KS (2014) Circular migration. IZA World of LaborGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e StatisticheUniversita’ di SalernoFiscianoItaly
  2. 2.Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF)NapoliItaly

Personalised recommendations