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  • Book
  • Open Access
  • © 2022

New Social Mobility

Second Generation Pioneers in Europe

  • This open access book addresses social mobility opportunities

  • Provides a comparative view on the upcoming elite among children of labour immigrants

  • Offers insights on the reproduction of status and failed intergenerational mobility

  • This book is open access, which means that you have free and unlimited access

Part of the book series: IMISCOE Research Series (IMIS)

Buying options

Softcover Book USD 49.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Hardcover Book USD 59.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)

Table of contents (7 chapters)

  1. Front Matter

    Pages i-v
  2. Producing Pathways to Success: New Perspectives on Social Mobility

    • Andreas Pott, Maurice Crul, Jens Schneider
    Pages 1-20Open Access
  3. Data, Methods and Comparisons

    • Jens Schneider, Philipp Schnell, Michael Eve
    Pages 21-45Open Access
  4. Setting the Stage: Being Successful and Negotiating New (Mainstream) Identities

    • Jens Schneider, Ali Konyali, Ismintha Waldring, Reinhilde Pulinx
    Pages 47-78Open Access
  5. Becoming Successful in the Business and Law Sectors: Institutional Structures and Individual Resources

    • Elif Keskiner, Christine Lang, Ali Konyali, Sara Rezai
    Pages 79-104Open Access
  6. New Social Mobility: Pioneers and Their Potentials for Change

    • Maurice Crul, Jens Schneider, Andreas Pott
    Pages 153-171Open Access

About this book

This open access book comparatively analyses intergenerational social mobility in immigrant families in Europe. It is based on qualitative in-depth research into several hundred biographies and professional trajectories of young people with an immigrant working-class background, who made it into high-prestige professions. The biographies were collected and analysed by a consortium of researchers in nine European countries from Norway to Spain. Through these analyses, the book explores the possibilities of cross-country comparisons of how trajectories are related to different institutional arrangements at the national and local level. The analysis uncovers the interaction effects between structural/institutional settings and specific individual achievements and family backgrounds, and how these individuals responsed to and navigated successfully through sector-specific pathways into high-skilled professions, such as becoming a lawyer or a teacher. By this, it also explains why these trajectories of professional success and upward mobility have been so exceptional in the second generation of working-class origins, and it tells us a lot also about exclusion mechanisms that marked the school and professional careers of children of immigrants who went to school in the 1970s to 2000s in Europe – and still do.


  • Open access
  • Upward social mobility among children of immigrants in Europe
  • Access to high-prestige jobs
  • 2nd generation pioneers in law, business, medicine and education
  • Social mobility and institutional contexts
  • Comparative qualitative research
  • Trajectories of professional success
  • second generation immigrants
  • Social mobility in immigrant families
  • Young people in high-prestige professions
  • Professional success and upward social mobility
  • Second generation of working-class family origins
  • Social mobility opportunities and exclusion

Editors and Affiliations

  • Institute for Migration Research and Intercultural Studies (IMIS), Universität Osnabrück, Osnabrück, Germany

    Jens Schneider, Andreas Pott

  • Faculty of Social Sciences, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

    Maurice Crul

About the editors

Jens Schneider is Senior Researcher at the Institute for Migration Research and Intercultural Studies (IMIS) at the University of Osnabrück, Germany. He studied Anthropology, Musicology, Linguistics and Ethnic Studies at the universities of Hamburg and Amsterdam and received his Ph.D. in Anthropology at the University of Tübingen. He was Post-doc at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and senior researcher at the Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies at the University of Amsterdam. He has been coordinator of the IMISCOE Standing Committee “Education and Social Mobility/Inequalities” since 2012. His major research interests include identity, urban diversity, cultural production, social mobility and education. Selected recent publications: "Young refugees in education: the particular challenges of school systems in Europe." (2019; Comparative Migration Studies Vol. 7, article 28 (2019) with C. Köhler); “'Ausländer' (foreigners), migrants, or new Germans? Identity-Building processes and school socialization among adolescents from immigrant backgrounds in Germany." In New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development, 160/2018, 59-73; "Demographic ‘Megatrends’ and Their Implications (2018; Siirtolaisuus/Migration); Diversifying the Teaching Force in Transnational Contexts. Critical Perspectives (2016; edited with Clea Schmidt); Social Mobility, Habitus and Identity Formation in the Turkish-German Second Generation (2014; New Diversities; with Christine Lang); The European Second Generation Compared: Does the Integration Context Matter? (2012; edited with Maurice Crul and Frans Lelie).

Maurice Crul is a distinguished Professor of Sociology on the topic of Diversity and Education at the Free University. He studied Political Science and Ethnic Studies and received his PhD in Anthropology department at the University of Amsterdam. He initiated and directed the first comparative research project on the children of immigrants, the TIES-Project and received ERC grants for the ELITES-Project on successful children of Turkish immigrants in four European countries and the current ongoing BaM-Project on people of non-immigrant descent in superdiverse neighbourhoods in several European cities. His major recent publications include: Super-diversity vs assimilation: How complex diversity in majority-minority cities challenges the assumptions of assimilation. Ethnic and Racial Studies (2016); Super-diversity. A New Vision on Integration (2013; with J. Schneider and F. Lelie); Snakes and Ladders in Educational Systems. Access to Higher Education for second Generation Turks in Europe. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies (2013); The European Second Generation. Does the Integration Context matter? (2012; with J. Schneider and F. Lelie); Comparative Context Integration Theory. Participation and belong in Europe’s large cities. Ethnic and Racial Studies (2010; with E. Keskiner, J. Schneider); The multiplier effect. How the accumulation of cultural and social capital explains steep upward mobility of children of low educated immigrants. Ethnic and Racial Studies (2017; with J. Schneider and F. Lelie).

Andreas Pott is Professor of Social Geography and Deputy Director of the Institute for Migration Research and Intercultural Studies (IMIS) at the University of Osnabrück, Germany. He studied Geography and Mathematics at Bonn University and University College London, received his PhD at the University of Osnabrück. He is member of the Editorial Board of Comparative Migration Studies. His main research interests are: Geographies of Migration, Knowledge Production on Migration, and Social Mobility. Selected publications: What is a Migration Regime? (2018; edited with Christoph Rass and Frank Wolff); The Local Production of Asylum. Journal of Refugee Studies (2016; with Sophie Hinger and Philipp Schäfer); Geography of Migration. In the Encyclopedia of Global Human Migration (2013); Ethnicity and Social Mobility: The Case of Turks in Germany. Journal of International Migration and Integration (2001).

Bibliographic Information

  • Book Title: New Social Mobility

  • Book Subtitle: Second Generation Pioneers in Europe

  • Editors: Jens Schneider, Maurice Crul, Andreas Pott

  • Series Title: IMISCOE Research Series

  • DOI:

  • Publisher: Springer Cham

  • eBook Packages: History, History (R0)

  • Copyright Information: The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2022

  • License: CC BY

  • Hardcover ISBN: 978-3-031-05565-2Published: 29 June 2022

  • Softcover ISBN: 978-3-031-05568-3Published: 29 June 2022

  • eBook ISBN: 978-3-031-05566-9Published: 28 June 2022

  • Series ISSN: 2364-4087

  • Series E-ISSN: 2364-4095

  • Edition Number: 1

  • Number of Pages: V, 171

  • Number of Illustrations: 1 b/w illustrations

  • Topics: Human Migration, Sociology of Migration, Labor and Population Economics, Sociology of Work

Buying options

Softcover Book USD 49.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
Hardcover Book USD 59.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)