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ERIC Number: ED419058
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991
Reference Count: N/A
Immigrant Social Mobility: The Determinants of Economic Success among Lebanese, Maltese, and Vietnamese. Working Papers on Multiculturalism Paper No. 22.
This report examines patterns of social mobility in Australia by comparing Maltese, Lebanese, and Vietnamese immigrants with an Australian-born control group. The data come from a 1988-89 national opinion survey conducted on behalf of the Australian Office of Multicultural Affairs. The survey over-sampled several overseas-born groups, with samples of 509 Maltese, 554 Lebanese, and 679 Vietnamese people compared to 1,070 Australian-born people. Findings make it clear that migration represents a major disruption to a working career, with immigrants reduced to a uniform level of job status in their early years of settlement regardless of their inherited capital or individual achievements. There were significant differences in the social mobility of the immigrant groups, especially in the impact of education and qualifications. Primary and secondary education obtained within Australia produced substantial rewards for a migrant's first occupation relative to similar education earned overseas, but was of little difference to subsequent jobs. Possession of a recognized overseas qualification was equal to or greater than an equivalent Australian qualification in influencing the status of the first job, but in the later career the Australian qualification was more important. English proficiency was of economic value only for longer-established immigrant groups, although why this was so was not clear. Attitudes toward the nature of work were very important for occupational status, and family networks had only a minor impact on mobility. (Contains 12 tables, 2 figures, and 57 references.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Books; Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Australian Office of Multicultural Affairs, Canberra.
Authoring Institution: Wollongong Univ., New South Wales (Australia). Centre for Multicultural Studies.
Identifiers: Australia; Lebanese; Maltese Australians