Publication Types:

Getting ahead. Educational and occupational trajectories of the 'new' second-generation in Switzerland

Journal ArticleSSCI
Schnell, Philipp; Fibbi, Rosita
Journal of International Migration and Integration, Volume 17, Issue 4, 1085-1107
Publication year: 2016

This paper examines the educational and occupational trajectories among second-generation immigrants of Turkish and Western-Balkan origin in Switzerland. Using a representative sample of 1107 respondents in two Swiss urban areas, the findings reveal that descendants of immigrants have reduced chances to follow a constant successful path from education to occupation, which is mainly determined by parental socioeconomic status. However, young adults of Turkish and Western Balkan origin are significantly more often upward mobile than the majority group, a pattern that is robust against a range of controls. We find parental monitoring and family cohesion to be positively related with upward mobility. Moreover, second-generation immigrants are more likely to be upwardly mobile than starting high in the education system but subsequently moving downwards—a profile that is more frequent among Swiss origin youth. Our multivariate results indicate that a lack of intense parent–child communication and perceived discrimination in school are affecting this downward process.

The Academic Achievements of Immigrant Youths in New Destination Countries: Evidence from Southern Europe

Journal ArticleSSCI
Schnell, Philipp; Azzolini, Davide
Migration Studies, Volume 3, Issue 2, 217-240
Publication year: 2015

This article examines academic achievements of immigrant youths in four new immigration countries: Greece, Italy, Portugal and Spain. The analysis based on the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) of 2009 and 2012 reveals large educational achievement gaps between immigrant children and natives in all four south European countries. The achievement gaps shrink substantially after accounting for differences in family backgrounds. The drawbacks faced by immigrant children in these four new immigration countries are due to fewer economic and material resources being available to them. On the other hand, the educational background of parents does not account for immigrant−native differences in academic performance. This stands in contrast to many traditional European immigration countries in which a lack of educational resources explains larger parts of the educational disadvantages of immigrant children. Our findings provide empirical evidence for the very precarious socio-economic integration of adult immigrants in new destination countries who, despite their relatively strong educational credentials, are placed into the lowest occupational positions. Such weak occupational attainments among the parental generation translate into a lack of material resources and investments available to families to foster their children’s education.

Place Attachment and Social Ties - Migrants and Natives in Three Urban Settings in Vienna

Journal ArticleSSCI
Schnell, Philipp; Kohlbacher, Josef; Reeger, Ursula
Population, Space and Place, Volume 21, Issue 5, 446-462
Publication year: 2015

With ongoing immigration from ‘all over the world’, European cities are realising that the local level is gaining importance as a setting for interethnic coexistence. In this article, we investigate the attachment of migrants and natives to their local context in three neighbourhoods (one better‐off, two more deprived) in Vienna that differ in contextual, structural, and socio‐economic characteristics. We ask how the place attachment of natives and migrants is related to weak and strong social ties. In all three neighbourhoods, we found a majority of residents reported high or medium levels of attachment proving that urban neighbourhoods are still important contexts for local residents. A closer look revealed differences across groups and research areas: The strongest place attachment is displayed by natives in the middle‐class area of Laudongasse, with migrants being significantly less attached, but still more than migrants (and natives) in the two deprived settings. In social housing (Am Schöpfwerk), migrants are more attached than natives, whereas in Ludo‐Hartmann‐Platz, the difference is not significant. The first result is that obviously deprivation reduces individual place attachment. In contrast to previous studies we found that socio‐demographic factors are not relevant, it is social contacts that are important in explaining local attachment. For natives and migrants alike, close ties in the neighbourhood raise local attachment. Small talks are relevant for migrants but not for natives. This is in line with previous studies emphasising the special relevance of weak ties for migrants in supporting the integration process in a new environment.

Neighbourhood embeddedness in six European cities: Differences between neighbourhood types and immigrant background

Journal ArticleSSCI
Schnell, Philipp; Kohlbacher, Josef; Reeger, Ursula
Polish Sociological Review, Volume 180, Issue 4, 523-544
Publication year: 2012

This paper analyses neighbourhood embeddedness of immigrant and non-immigrant populations in six European cities. We define neighbourhood embeddedness as an individual level concept and distinguish two main dimensions: place and network embeddedness. The neighbourhood embeddedness concept provides us with the possibility to study attitudinal and behavioural aspects of individuals related to the place of living. Using data from the ‘Generating Interethnic Tolerance and Neighbourhood Integration in European Urban Spaces’ (GEITONIES) project, we explore communalities and differences in the degree of embeddedness and its underlyingmechanisms for immigrant and non-immigrant residents across a set of different neighbourhood types. Our findings suggest that neighbourhoods are still important focal points of social life. But immigrants are characterized by higher levels of neighbourhood embeddedness than native residents which are mostly related to the strong link between perceived feelings of attachment to the people in the neighbourhood and the place as such.

Educational Achievement Gaps between Immigrant and Native Students in Two “New Immigration Countries”: Italy and Spain in comparison

Journal ArticleSSCI
Azzolini, Davide; Schnell, Philipp; Palmer, John R.
ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, Volume 643, Issue 1, 46-77
Publication year: 2012

The authors use 2009 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) data to determine how immigrant children in Italy and Spain compare with native students in reading and mathematics skills. Drawing on the vast empirical literature in countries with traditionally high rates of immigration, the authors test the extent to which the most well-established patterns and hypotheses of immigrant/native educational achievement gaps also apply to these comparatively “new” immigration countries. The authors find that both first- and second-generation immigrant students underperform natives in both countries. Although socioeconomic background and language skills contribute to the explanation of achievement gaps, significant differences remain within the countries even after controlling for those variables. While modeling socioeconomic background reduces the observed gaps to a very similar extent in both countries, language spoken at home is more strongly associated with achievement gaps in Italy. School-type differentiation, such as tracking in Italy and school ownership in Spain, do not reduce immigrant/native gaps, although in Italy tracking is strongly associated with immigrant students’ test scores.