Ethnic Inequality in Educational Attainment and Selective Migration

Research question/goal: 

The project concentrates on the question, whether the slow pace of the educational integration of the second generation in Germany has been induced – at least to a certain extent – by a widening gap in class origin. As it seems, lower educational attainment of the second generation results primarily from differences in class origin rather than from genuine ethnic traits. Given the fact that the relationship between social origin and educational attainment has been weakening over the past decades one might expect ethnic educational inequality to disappear over time. But then, this would only happen if the gap in class origin weren’t widening either due to a negative educational selection in the replenishment process, i.e. the arrival of migrants, or due to an increase in the educational background of the indigenous population. The empirical analyses focus on changes in the composition of educational background and in the relationship between educational background and educational attainment as important determinants in the process of intergenerational educational integration.

Current stage: 

Currently the project addresses the question how the relationship between educational background and educational attainment changed over the last decades in Germany. Given the pronounced differences in the parental educational distributions between the second generation and the indigenous population changes in the association between educational background and attainment might crucially affect how inequality evolvs. Additionally, empirical research has focused on whether these changes applied equally to members of the second generation and the indigenous population in order to investigate if and how patterns of educational inequality have developed.

Fact sheet

Funding: 
MZES
Duration: 
2011 to 2015
Status: 
ongoing
Data Sources: 
secondary data
Geographic Space: 
Germany

Publications