Tied and Troubled: Revisiting Tied Migration and Subsequent Employment

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Magdalena Krieger

In: Journal of Marriage and Family (2020), im Ersch. [online first: 2019-11-06]

Abstract

ObjectiveThis article looks at couples' migration decision making processes and their gender‐specific employment consequences after migration to Germany.BackgroundInternational migration has evolved into a common experience for couples around the globe. Previous research has focused on the internal migration of couples and families. This article is the first to consider couples' international migration decisions drawing on the theoretical concepts of Mincer's tied migration theory and gender role beliefs.MethodUsing data from the German Socio‐Economic Panel Survey, this study explores the labor market integration of tied, lead, and equal immigrants. Labor market integration is measured in terms of the probability to be employed and the time to first employment in Germany. The author investigates these outcomes via differences‐in‐differences and survival analysis regression techniques.ResultsMale tied, relative to lead and equal immigrants, are significantly less likely to be employed shortly after migration as well as in the long run. By contrast, no significant differences in the employment probability showed between female tied migrants and their reference groups after migration. Yet, lead migrants of both genders enter the German labor market earlier than tied as well as equal movers.ConclusionThis study provides the first evidence on the significance of circumstances in couples' migration decisions making for (gender‐specific) returns to migration and in that highlights key aspects of international couple migration.



Keywords: couples, decision making, employment, gender, international, migration
DOI:
https://doi.org/10.1111/jomf.12620