“Making Do” in the Land of Opportunity—a Quantitative Exploration of the Economic Integration of Refugees in Utah
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The economic integration of refugees is a multidimensional process. Yet, existing research predominantly assesses economic integration unidimensionally as rapid employment or as wage level. Few researchers examine refugees’ long-term prospects for earning a livable wage. I argue that to understand refugee economic integration researchers should model multiple dimensions. Using a combination of administrative data and regional contextual data, I employ event history analysis to compare models predicting employment to those predicting the acquisition of a livable wage. I find that the factors contributing to employment differ dramatically from those that contribute to earning a livable wage. The study offers strong support for the broad hypothesis that scholars need to theorize the causes of different forms of economic integration separately.
KeywordsRefugee Forced migrant Employment Economic integration Livable wage
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