Quantifying and Qualifying Inequality Among Migrants

  • Wardlow FriesenEmail author
Part of the Mobility & Politics book series (MPP)


The analysis of inequality between migrant and non-migrant/host populations has been regularly undertaken within migration studies. However, the consideration of inequalities within migrant populations is much less common. A range of factors may contribute to the inequalities between migrant groups, including nationality, ethnicity and migration status, and within migrant groups, including gender, educational level and socio-economic status. These may originate in pre-migration factors such as social capital, factors related to the selectivity of the migration process itself and/or post-migration conditions such as ‘fit’ in the labour market, reception by the host society and degree of access to services. Using the New Zealand case study, this chapter develops some methods of quantifying some of these inequalities through the use of measures related to income, unemployment and wage levels. The use of these quantitative approaches is also qualified in relation to data availability, data accuracy and the dangers of essentialising difference. Furthermore, the use of qualified information based on detailed case studies and other sources is also suggested. As proposed elsewhere in this book, migration policy itself is the source of inequality among migrants, but an understanding of other sources of inequality is also important in informing policy on migrant outcomes for government and non-government agencies.


Quantitative measures Spatial clustering Income inequality Employment Unemployment Earnings Gini Coefficient Lorenz Curve 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of EnvironmentUniversity of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand

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