Socio-structural effects on educational poverty of young immigrants. An international-comparative perspective

Janna Teltemann, University of Bremen
Michael Windzio, University of Bremen

In the course of increasing immigration many western countries are confronted with the challenge of integrating growing immigrant populations. A prerequisite of long-term integration is educational success in the host country. As recent cross-national surveys show, some countries fare better than others when it comes to educational equality between immigrants and natives. In the majority of the countries, a significant part of young immigrants is educationally poor, which means that their social integration is at risk. Previous explanations of integration and education mainly focused on individual resources, not on opportunities and restrictions that arise from the social structure of the host country. In this paper, we combine educational sociology with the political economy of the welfare state. We assess the influence of national institutions on individual educational poverty of immigrants. Our results suggest that income inequality in the host country seems to increase the risk of educational poverty, whereas the size of the immigrant population reduces the individual risk. Redistribution in terms of social contributions protects immigrants from being educationally poor. If average achievement of natives is controlled for, the effect of redistribution is no longer significant, suggesting that high performing countries are also countries with more redistribution.

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Presented in Poster Session 1