• Karen Nielsen Breidahl
4. term, Public Administration and Social Science (Master Programme)
Abstract During the last year, integration of immigrants from non-western countries at the Danish labour market has been a key issue in the public debate and on the government agenda because of their relatively low employment rate compared to that of the native Danes. Especially, the lack of employment among immigrant women has received a lot of attention, and it has been a key element in the integration program “A New Chance for Everyone”. The aim of this project is to examine which factors influence the employment of immigrant women. The empirical background incorporates employed as well as and unemployed immigrant women. Due to lack of available data regarding immigrant women, a survey has been conducted among employed and unemployed immigrant women from non-western countries in the municipalities of Vejle and Aalborg. The survey has been conducted on the basis of existing theoretical perspectives in connection with an empirical pilot study. Five competing explanations have been compared in order to examine the thesis. Four of them are linked to the immigrant women and they are therefore founded at the individual level. The first explanation focuses on the economic and non–economic incentives of immigrant women, which includes work incentives and “housewife mentality”. The second explanation includes skills and qualifications (education, language skills and work experience). The third takes informal resources, such as the influence of knowledge in order to find a job and that of knowing other employed women, into consideration. The fourth explanation includes the immigrant women’s own perception of their health. Finally, the fifth explanation aims to attain an understanding of which influence the municipalities have on the immigrant women’s opportunities for employment. This explanation does not take only one, but several aspects into consideration, because of the fact that there is focus on the composition of the municipalities' employment effort as well as the characteristics of the immigrant women. The concluding results show that several indicators in a varying degree influence the employment opportunities for immigrant women since qualifications, resources, health experience, and the composition of the municipalities' employment effort have impact. If one is to emphasise indicators, which are especially important, qualifications and upbringing stand out due to the fact the immigrant women differentiate themselves on these parameters.
Publication date2007
Number of pages100
Publishing institutionAalborg Universitet
ID: 12901987