Location of Study and the Labour Market Success of Immigrants to Canada - ARCHIVED

Articles and reports: 81-595-M2011093


This report uses data from the 2006 Census of Population to examine the extent to which the location completion of highest postsecondary diploma/degree completion affects the relative labour market success of immigrants to in Canada. Using descriptive and multivariate techniques, different immigrant cohorts are compared to the Canadian-born with respect to labour force status, earnings and the match between occupation and required schooling. In line with prior Canadian research, we find that in comparison with the Canadian-born, immigrants, especially very-recent immigrants, are more likely to be out of the labour force and less likely to be paid employees, even after accounting for a set of pertinent variables drawn from prior research. When employed, they are much more likely to be overeducated and less likely to be correctly matched or self-employed. They are also more likely to face an earnings disadvantage in Canada's labour markets. Location of study plays a role. Those who completed their postsecondary education in the United Kingdom, France, the United States or, to some extent in Germany, were much more likely to do well on Canada's labour markets in terms of employment ratios and earnings, regardless of immigration cohort, compared to those who completed their postsecondary studies in any other foreign country, especially China, the Russian Federation, Pakistan or South Korea. This finding leads us to conclude that many prospective employers who use education to assess the potential productivity of prospective labour market participants may perceive the 'outcomes' of the British, American, French and German postsecondary education systems as having components that are more easily transferable to Canada than the 'outcomes' of the Chinese, Russian Federation, Pakistani and South Korean postsecondary education systems. Our results lend support to the idea that many Canadian employers and several other stakeholders (such as regulatory bodies, assessment agencies, etc.) may not value postsecondary educational qualifications from all source regions equally.

Issue Number: 2011093
Author(s): Ewoudou, Jacques
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HTMLSeptember 13, 2011
PDFSeptember 13, 2011