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The Integration of Ethiopian immigrants in Sweden, 1990-2000
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology.
2006 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (professional degree), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The main purpose of this Master Essay is to analyse the integration of Ethiopian immigrants in Sweden between 1990 and 2000. My hypothesis has been that Ethiopian immigrants in Sweden constitute a group whose prospects to integrate are fairly low, but whose prospects to integrate also depend on the sex-composition and the length of staying in Sweden. In my analysis of the chosen group’s immigration pattern and integration, I have used a longitudinal database of the Swedish population where information on income and employment are included. I have analysed the group’s labour market participation and their prospects to reduce and eventually close the income gap in relation to the working aged population in Sweden.

The regime of control in Ethiopia between 1977 and 1991 forced hundreds of thousands of mostly young Ethiopians to flee to Europe and USA. Between 1985 and 2000, 8033 Ethiopians immigrated to Sweden. The peak years were 1989 and 1991, preceded by a dramatic increase of the number of Ethiopians who immigrated to Sweden. After 1991 the immigration from Ethiopia to Sweden declined rapidly to a similarly low level as before 1985.

Nevertheless, when analysing the age-composition, those aged 18-29 years were shown to be in majority throughout the whole period as mostly young Ethiopians were forced to flee before 1991. Also, younger persons are more likely to migrate than older persons. The spectacular decrease of Ethiopian immigration to Sweden was probably linked to the former regime’s capitulation in 1991. In addition, Eritrea’s outbreak from Ethiopia in 1991 also had consequences on the numbers of Ethiopian immigrants to Sweden as Eritreans were no longer categorized as Ethiopians. Up to 1991, men were more likely to immigrate, but after then females were clearly in majority.

The frequency of not being employed has decreased considerably among Ethiopian immigrants throughout the period. At the same time, the income gap between them and the population in general was reduced even though it remained large in the whole period. The decrease in the proportion of Ethiopian immigrants without employment was larger for the females than for the males, and even if men had higher incomes throughout the period, women’s income approached that. Thus it seems that the integration process is on its way for Ethiopian immigrants, especially for the women. The age-composition is probably an important factor behind the group’s relatively successful integration given the large share of working aged persons.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Sociologiska institutionen , 2006. , 40 p.
Keyword [en]
Integration, Migration, Ethiopians, Labour market, Demography, Population geography
National Category
Sociology (excluding Social work, Social Psychology and Social Anthropology)
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-1231OAI: diva2:189651
Available from: 2006-08-23 Created: 2006-08-23Bibliographically approved

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