Encyclopedia of Migration

Living Edition
| Editors: Reed Ueda

Duration of Residence Measurement

  • Ilana Redstone Akresh
  • Douglas S. Massey
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-6179-7_90-1


Duration of residence refers to the variable used in empirical research that captures the time a foreign-born individual has been in the USA. This time could be accumulated in one continuous stretch (e.g., an individual who left his or her home country, came to the USA, and remained in the USA), or it could be accumulated across multiple trips to the USA. While this variable is relevant in both qualitative and quantitative research on the foreign born, it is relied upon heavily in quantitative studies as a proxy for an individual’s exposure to the USA.

Concept and Background

A fundamental attribute of all immigrants is the amount of time they have spent in the host country. Whatever theory of immigrant absorption one favors – whether classical assimilation theory, ethnic pluralism, human capital theory, segmented assimilation, or ethnic stratification – an adequate empirical test requires measuring the time spent in the receiving country, either as an independent variable...


Host Society Human Capital Theory Immigrant Absorption Assimilation Theory Immigrant Cohort 
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  1. Redstone I, Massey DS (2004) Coming to stay: an analysis of the U.S. census question on year of arrival. Demography 41(4):721–738CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of IllinoisChampaignUSA
  2. 2.Office of Population ResearchPrinceton UniversityPrincetonUSA