1st Edition

The Ethnic Penalty
Immigration, Education and the Labour Market

ISBN 9781138260641
Published November 10, 2016 by Routledge
144 Pages

USD $62.95

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Book Description

Populations of visible ethnic minorities have steadily increased over the past few decades in immigrant-receptive societies. While a complex calculus of push and pull factors has motivated this increase, one of the main impetuses for this migration has been the search for employment, better wages and a higher standard of living. It is therefore not surprising that the educational attainments of the first generation and beyond have achieved convergence with, or exceeded the non-ethnic minority cohort. These outcomes may suggest a greater propensity for visible ethnic minorities to attain labour market success and to fully integrate within the community. However, the narrative derived from statistical analysis, interviews and participant observation suggest an uneasiness boldly to claim this as the most convincing conclusion at this juncture. The Ethnic Penalty argues that a penalty has impeded the occupational success of ethnic minorities during the job search, hiring and promotion process. As a result, ethnic minorities have a lower income, higher unemployment and a general failure to convert their high educational attainments into comparable occupational outcomes. In this context, the book examines whether explanatory factors such as discrimination, an individual's social network, a firm's working culture, and a community's social trust are major contributing reasons behind this apparent penalty, whilst also making suggestions for improving the integration, education delivery, and labour market outcomes of visible ethnic minorities.

Table of Contents

Contents: Preface; Introduction; Immigration; Education; The labour market; The penalty; Future outlook; Appendices; Bibliography; Index.

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Reza Hasmath is Lecturer in Chinese Politics at the University of Oxford, UK and editor of Managing Ethnic Diversity.


'The Ethnic Penalty is a compelling study that explores ethnicity and difference in a contemporary multicultural state. Skillfully meshing ethnographic field work with long term quantitative data Hasmath persuasively demonstrates the subtle and various modes of discrimination that shape the lives of migrants and their children across their life course.' Catriona Elder, University of Sydney, Australia 'For those who have never worried about the part their ethnicity plays in occupational achievements, living and working in their countries of birth, The Ethnic Penalty by Dr Reza Hasmath of the University of Melbourne is an eye-opening experience. Using information obtained in Toronto, the book explores the myriad reasons currently in circulation for why ethnic minorities have difficulties achieving same occupational levels as their non-ethnic counterparts, despite being increasingly educated in common schools and universities... The book’s large amount of quantitative data, coupled with the extensive field work, help make for a compelling read that truly highlights this area of research’s many issues... a compelling and thought-provoking read, highlighting the many forms of discrimination immigrants can face over their lifetime, as well as the manifestation of this discrimination in the education and labour market.' Migration Australia 'The empirical evidences in this book are impressive... Hasmath’s contribution to the study of social position of non-white immigrants in Canada is noteworthy. It provides a lucid and intriguing read into the ethnic penalty, which shapes the lives of migrants and their offspring, and will be of great value to scholars and practitioners in the field of migration.' Ethnic and Racial Studies 'This study makes a valuable contribution to a concept which has received only relatively recent attention, and that mainly of an academic, rather than practical nature. If the efforts of Toronto to become a truly cosmopolitan city are to be re