2021-11-22Zeitschriftenartikel DOI: 10.1007/s43545-021-00279-3
The labor market integration of immigrant women in Europe: context, theory, and evidence
Interdisziplinäre Zentren gemäß AS-Beschluss vom 17.02.2004
In this overview, we seek to provide a comprehensive resource for scholars of female immigrant labor market integration in Europe, to act both as a reference and a roadmap for future studies in this domain. We begin by presenting a contextual history of immigration to and within Europe since the Second World War, before outlining the major theoretical assumptions about immigrant women’s labor market disadvantage. We then synthesize the empirical findings from quantitative studies published between 2000 and 2020 and analyze how they line up with the theoretical predictions. We supplement the review with descriptive analyses using data from 2019, which expose any discrepancies between the current situation in European countries and the situation during the time periods considered in the reviewed studies. Our review has three main take-aways. First, the theoretically relevant determinants of immigrant women’s labor market integration are generally supported by empirical evidence, but the unexplained heterogeneity that remains in many cases between immigrant women and other groups on the labor market calls for more systematic and comprehensive investigations. Second, quantitative studies which take a holistic approach to studying the labor market disadvantages of immigrant women—and all the considerations related to their gender and nativity that this entails—are rare in this body of literature, and future studies should address this. Third, fruitful avenues for future contributions to this field include expanding on certain overlooked outcomes, like immigrant women’s self-employment, as well as geographic regions that until now have received little attention, especially by employing the most recent data.
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