Poverty Dynamics over the Life-Course in Sweden. How Do Second-Generation Immigrants Fare Compared to Natives?

Raffaele Grotti , European University Institute
Siddartha Aradhya, Lund University
Ben Wilson, Stockholm University

In this paper we study poverty dynamics for second-generation immigrants in Sweden and how they compare with the native population. This is of particular importance because the negative consequences of poverty are exacerbated if poverty persists over time. It is thus crucial looking at poverty from a longitudinal perspective if we want understand socioeconomic inequality between the native and immigrant populations. At the same time, we investigate poverty dynamics in different phases of individuals’ life-courses, allowing us to ascertain if poverty dynamics vary in a way that strengthen or waken (potential) existing inequality between groups. We aim at filling the existing gap in the literature by answering to the following questions: what are the poverty dynamics of people in Sweden? To what extent does poverty persist over individuals’ life-courses, i.e. what is the ‘causal’ link between past and current poverty? Are these dynamics different for natives and immigrants in Sweden? And if so, are they different in a way that strengthen socio-economic inequality between these groups? Do potential differences decrease or rather magnify over the life course? To our scope, we use Swedish population register data that permits us to follow individuals over their life-courses, and minimizes (if not excludes) selective attrition. For our analyses we employ correlated dynamic random-effects probit models. This type of model is particular suitable for our scope because it allows us to study the persistence of poverty, i.e. ‘genuine’ state dependence, while controlling for unobserved heterogeneity.

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 Presented in Session 109. Economic and Emotional Well-being across the Life Course