Social support in partnerships and labor market outcomes of immigrants in Germany

Verena Seibel, Universität Konstanz

This study looks at the effects of social support provided by the partner on immigrant labor market outcomes. I thereby study two labor market outcomes, risk of unemployment and occupational status, and differentiate between three forms of support: informational support, instrumental support and emotional support. I can show that informational, instrumental and emotional support vary in their effects on labor market outcomes and that certain differences can also be found between immigrant groups. The results suggest that third country nationals, compared to EU migrants and ethnic Germans, benefit particularly from their partners’ informational and emotional support, however, only with regard to finding employment. EU migrants and ethnic Germans do not benefit from their partner’s support with regard to finding employment; however, they benefit significantly from personal job references, with regard to occupational status. Moreover, informational and instrumental support is only effective if the partnership is characterized by emotional closeness, hence, if the partner provides emotional support. This suggests that emotional support works as a transmission belt of other resources and should therefore be included in future research.

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Presented in Poster Session 2