Migrant communities and
quality of life in European
neighbourhoods
Presentation to 6th International Conference on
Population Geographies
David Owen, IER and CRER,
University of Warwick, Coventry, UK.
Aims of the paper
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To identify the comparative circumstances of migrants from within
the EU and third-country migrants
To compare the situations of third-country migrants of “European”
and developing world heritage
To analyse comparative patterns of disadvantage of migrants and
determine whether the second generation of migrants remain
disadvantaged
To identify the extent to which disadvantaged migrants tend to
concentrate in disadvantaged neighbourhoods
To assess the relative importance of individual and local labour
market factors and spatial structure on the likelihood of
employment
Structure of paper
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Outline of migration and integration in the
European Union
Discussion of data sources
Key questions for analysis
Analysis of labour market contrasts
Analysis of deprivation patterns
Analysis of housing circumstances
Conclusions
Trends of migration to the EU
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Since WW2, Europe has attracted an increasing volume of international
migrants.
Those born outside Europe now form around a tenth of the population.
There is considerable national variation – from 4% in Finland to 32.2%
in Luxembourg. Among the larger countries, from 7.3% in Italy to 13.8%
in Spain.
In the 1950s/60s mass international immigration was mainly from
former colonies, to meet the demands of industry. In 1970s/80s
migration declined and was mainly family reunification.
Immigration increased rapidly from 1990s onwards, due to increased
refugee flows and economic migrants as the pace of globalisation
increased
Increased EU integration has led to greater intra-EU migration. EU
policy aims to increase mobility in order to improve productivity and
competitiveness (Lisbon Agenda)
Expansion of the EU into eastern Europe from 2004 has attracted a
new source of intra-EU migrants.
Integration of international migrants in
the EU
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Migrants from outside Europe were recruited by employers to meet the
labour demands of growing industries and for declining industries
unattractive to European workers. Jobs were predominantly low skilled
and low paid.
Migrants also found opportunities in the service sector, also low paid.
The geographical distribution of these migrants tends to reflect the
location of job opportunities and business opportunities.
Thus, they are located in larger cities (often capitals like London, Paris
or Berlin), but also industrial areas (e.g. north-west England).
With low incomes and facing discrimination, residential choice was
limited to poorer quality housing, often in the older parts of cities. With
high levels of need, they also tend to be concentrated in social housing
(now poor quality) in urban fringes.
Some second/third generation migrants have progressed economically,
others remain disadvantaged, living in disadvantaged locations.
EU aims to increase the rights of 3rd country nationals, but to restrict
unskilled migration from outside the EU.
Data sources
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This paper is largely based on Eurofound’s second European
Quality of Life Survey (2007).
A large survey: 1000 interviews of people aged 18+ living in
private households in each country and over 2000 in countries
with the largest populations.
Asks a wide range of socio-economic and demographic
questions. There are also questions about lifestyle and attitudes.
The survey includes questions on country of birth of the
respondents and their parents, and on the neighbourhood and
NUTS2 region in which they live.
Neighbourhoods are classified as having ‘many’, ‘some’ or ‘few’
people from minority ethnic groups.
The European Values Survey (a survey of similar size, also
intended to be broadly representative of the adult population) is
used to calculate indicators of diversity and prejudice towards
migrants and minorities for NUTS1 regions.
Key questions being addressed
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Are migrants from Africa/Asia/Latin America
more disadvantaged than intra-EU migrants
and 3rd country European migrants?
Does the disadvantage of the first generation
persist into the second?
Are neighbourhoods where ethnic minorities
are most common most deprived, and are
migrants concentrated in deprived areas?
Labour market contrasts
Migrant status
Person and parents
born in country
1st generation EU
1st generation
European
1st generation
Africa/Asia/Latin
America
2nd generation other
EU
2nd generation outside
Europe
All
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Employment
rate
Unemploym
ent rate
8.3
Students as
a % of
population
5.9
% EA pop
long-term
unemployed
4.6
Female
employment
rate
44.0
51.4
52.4
59.0
15.2
13.4
3.8
7.6
5.1
7.8
48.5
46.4
57.4
16.1
6.0
5.6
53.1
52.9
11.9
8.9
9.1
49.8
53.8
14.4
23.0
5.4
47.8
51.9
9.3
6.3
5.0
44.8
The employment rate of migrants is higher than that of the ‘native’ population, and highest for thirdcountry migrants with European heritage.
The employment rate of the second generation is lower than that of first generation migrants.
Female employment rates are also higher for migrants. A higher percentage of migrants are students for
(except first generation EU migrants), reflecting younger age structure.
The percentage of the economically active population unemployed is much higher for migrants,
especially for those from Asia, Africa and Latin America.
Second generation of third country migrants is also much more likely to be unemployed than both nonmigrants and other migrants.
Long-term unemployment is more of a problem for migrants of European origin.
Occupational contrasts
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Migrants from elsewhere in EU more likely to be professionals
and managers or skilled employees
In the first generation of third country migrants, those of
European origin and those with origins in Africa, Asia and Latin
America are most likely to be unskilled manual workers and
much less likely to be managers.
In the second generation, those of European heritage are much
more likely to be in managerial occupations, while nonEuropeans are much more likely to have unskilled occupations
and work in the service sector.
The non-European second generation from are also less likely
than the non-European first generation to be entrepreneurs.
This confirms the role of intra-European migrants in filling skilled
positions and highlight the continued disadvantage of second
generation non-Europeans.
Employment rates
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First-generation EU migrants have similar employment rates to nonmigrants in most countries, but their employment rate is very low in
Spain and Finland.
First-generation 3rd country migrants of European background have
higher than non-migrant employment rates in Spain, Finland Ireland,
France, Luxembourg, Sweden and the UK, but exhibit very low
employment rates in Belgium, Greece, Italy and Portugal.
Employment rates for first-generation 3rd country migrants of African,
Asian or Latin American heritage are below average in most countries,
but well above average in Spain, Italy and Sweden.
Second generation migrants from the EU display employment rates well
below average in Belgium, the Netherlands, Austria and the UK and
above average in Denmark, Greece and Sweden.
Rates for the second generation of non-European origin are lower than
the first generation, being extremely low in Germany, Greece, Ireland,
Italy and Austria. However, they were more likely to be employed than
average in Denmark, France and Luxembourg.
Unemployment rates
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The overall unemployment rate for survey participants was
particularly low in Scandinavia and much of northern Europe and
high in the Mediterranean, Germany, France and the UK.
The unemployment rates experienced by EU migrants were
broadly similar to those of non-migrants, except for the very high
rates in Spain and Finland.
First-generation migrants of European origin experienced very
high rates in Belgium, Greece, Finland and Austria.
First generation migrants from Africa, Asia and Latin America
experienced very high unemployment rates in most countries, but
very low rates in Luxembourg and Austria.
There was also extreme volatility in unemployment rates for
second-generation migrants.
Employment rates and geographical
concentration of minorities
Person and
parents born
in country
1st
generation
EU
1st
generation
European
1st
generation
Africa/Asia/L
atin America
2nd
generation
other EU
2nd
generation
outside
Europe
All
Almost nobody
59.4
58.6
52.7
76.8
52.4
68.8
59.4
Some people
58.6
58.7
61.1
60.5
66.6
30.4
58.5
Many people
57.5
72.6
55.2
48.8
38.1
56.8
56.5
All
58.9
61.4
56.9
58.6
57.0
52.0
58.7
People of a different ethnic
group from the majority
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The overall employment rate (and that of non-migrants) declines slightly as the ethnic minority share of
the neighbourhood population increases.
For first-generation EU migrants, the employment rate is highest in the neighbourhoods with high
minority populations.
For migrants of European origin, the employment rate is highest where ‘some’ people are from ethnic
minorities.
The employment rate of first-generation migrants from Africa, Asia and Latin America is highest where
the minority share of the population is lowest and lowest where it is highest.
For second-generation migrants, the employment rate is much lower in neighbourhoods where ‘many’
people are from ethnic minorities. Those of European origin are more likely to be employed where ‘some’
people are from ethnic minorities while those of non-European origin are least likely to work there.
Logistic regression results for the probability of
being employed (coefficients significant at 5%)
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Model successfully predicted 77 per cent of cases; Cox & Snell R
Square=0.376; Nagelkerke R Square value=0.501.
Base case: non-migrant man aged 25 to 34 with a basic level of education
living in a city in a neighbourhood with ‘many’ people from ethnic minorities.
Positive: level of education (strongest); aged 35 to 49; living in the open
countryside or in a village or small town; first generation.
Negative: aged under 24 or over 50; female; living in Germany, Finland,
Luxembourg, Austria or Sweden.
Labour market factors had the expected effect but were only weakly
influential
Diversity of population and measures of prejudice (both at NUTS1 scale)
had no statistically significant effect upon the probability of employment.
Therefore, holding the effect of education, gender and age constant, first
generation migrants from the EU and from Asia, Africa and Latin America
were more likely to be employed than either similar people whose origins lie
in the country of residence or second generation migrants. However, being
located in larger urban areas acts to reduce the probability of employment.
Quality of life and housing
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The EQLS includes a number of questions
about the standard of living of individuals
Here, the focus is on aspects of deprivation
and poor housing quality.
Six dimensions of deprivation
Keeping home
adequately warm
Paying for a week's
annual holiday away
from home
Replacing any worn-out
furniture
A meal with meat,
chicken or fish every
second day
Buy new, rather than
second-hand, clothes
Having friends or family
for a drink or meal at
least once a month
Total (millions)
No deprivation
more than 2
All six
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st
Person
and
parents
born in
country
1st
generatio
n EU
1
generatio
n
European
1st
generatio
n
Africa/Asi
a/Latin
America
2nd
generatio
n other
EU
2nd
generatio
n outside
Europe
All
6.5
5.8
10.1
10.8
7.3
8.0
6.7
22.5
25.7
41.9
37.9
18.0
28.9
23.6
19.9
22.7
30.5
31.2
22.9
19.2
20.7
3.3
3.9
7.0
6.3
3.9
4.7
3.6
6.4
9.5
20.0
9.8
7.3
7.0
7.0
7.9
10.5
20.4
12.3
8.7
3.7
8.4
261.6
70.2
18.2
1.2
9.9
61.7
20.7
1.1
6.1
49.4
33.8
1.5
12.6
54.6
31.5
1.4
9.8
69.0
17.1
1.6
5.8
62.7
18.8
0.0
305.8
68.7
19.1
1.2
All types of migrant were more likely than natives of a country to experience deprivation.
The first generation, with origins in the EU were least disadvantaged.
There was lesser disadvantage in the second generation, but those with non-European
origins were most disadvantaged.
First generation migrants were more likely than natives to experience two or more
elements of deprivation, though second generation migrants were less so.
A very small percentage of respondents were deprived on all six dimensions, with migrants
(especially second generation EU migrants) slightly more likely to be disadvantaged.
Two or more dimensions of disadvantage
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There are large national differences are revealed; highest levels of
deprivation occur in Greece, Portugal, Italy Germany and Spain, and
the lowest in Luxembourg and the Scandinavian countries.
The percentage of migrants experiencing this level of deprivation is
particularly high in the Mediterranean countries, notably for second
generation EU migrants in Greece.
Level of deprivation increases as the minority share of a
neighbourhood’s population increases, with migrants from outside the
EU experiencing the highest percentages.
Second generation migrants are only more disadvantaged than the
native population in the neighbourhoods with smallest minority
population shares.
In neighbourhoods with ‘many’ people from ethnic minorities, the %
deprived is highest in Portugal, Spain and Greece, with first generation
European migrants most disadvantaged.
Migrants from Africa, Asia and Latin America most deprived in France,
Germany, UK and Netherlands, where second generation is less
deprived.
Poor housing quality
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The overall percentage of people living in housing of poor physical standard
(here no exclusive bath/shower or WC) is highest in Ireland, Belgium and
Luxembourg, and lowest in Austria, France and the Netherlands.
The relative deprivation of migrants of European background is greatest in
Spain, France, Austria and the Netherlands.
People with origins in Asia, Africa and Latin America are most disadvantaged in
Denmark, Luxembourg the UK and the Netherlands.
Second generation migrants with origins outside Europe are particularly
disadvantaged in Belgium, Germany, Finland and the UK.
The percentage living in poor housing is much higher in the neighbourhoods
where ‘many’ people are from ethnic minorities.
Only in Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg and the Netherlands are migrants from
Africa, Asia and Latin America more likely to be disadvantaged.
Second generation non-European migrants again display relative housing
disadvantage in Belgium and the UK.
In most countries, those in the poorest housing in the areas of largest minority
populations are people born in the country with parents born in the country.
Poor housing quality and neighbourhood
concentration of minorities
People of a different
ethnic group from
the majority
Almost nobody
Some people
Many people
All
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Person
and
parents
born in
country
1st
generati
on EU
1st
generati
on
Europea
n
1.5
1.7
2.7
1.7
0.2
1.2
10.6
2.3
7.8
4.1
1.9
4.1
st
1
generati
on
Africa/As
ia/Latin
America
0.0
1.5
2.9
1.8
2nd
generati
on other
EU
2nd
generati
on
outside
Europe
All
0.4
0.6
7.5
1.1
2.2
9.1
4.0
5.1
1.4
1.8
3.2
1.8
EU migrants are most likely to live in poor quality housing in areas of high minority
population.
First generation migrants of European heritage are most likely to experience such housing
problems in areas of low minority populations
The percentage for first generation migrants from Asian and Africa is highest in
neighbourhoods with high minority populations.
Second generation EU migrants are also much more likely to experience housing
deprivation in areas of high minority populations
Second generation migrants with origins outside Europe were most disadvantaged in areas
where ‘some’ people were of an ethnic minority background.
Conclusions
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The results presented here suggest that while migrants tend to be disadvantaged relative
to the ‘native’ population, there is a less consistent differential between migrants of
European and non-European heritage.
Intra-EU migrants are generally more likely to be in employment, but may also experience
poorer living conditions than non-migrants.
There is clear evidence that neighbourhoods perceived as having larger numbers of people
from ethnic minorities were areas of poorer economic and social conditions.
However, EU migrants seemed to be more disadvantaged than third-country migrants
when living in these neighbourhoods.
The main determinant of being employed was the level of education. Age and gender were
also important. Being a first-generation migrant increased the probability of employment.
There was weak evidence of higher employment probabilities in more dynamic local labour
markets. The presence of discrimination had little effect on the probability of being
employed.
The analysis confirmed the disadvantage of second-generation migrants, particularly those
with non-European origins, who were less likely to be employed and more likely to work in
lower status jobs. However, they were less likely to suffer material deprivation than first
generation migrants and the deprived second generation were more likely to live where
the minority share of the population was lower.
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Migrant communities and quality of life in European neighbourhoods