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Occupation–education mismatch of immigrant workers in Europe: Context and policies

, CEPII, France ; , GAINS-TEPP, Université du Maine, France

Economics of Education Review Volume 36, Number 1, ISSN 0272-7757 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


This paper analyses occupational matching of immigrants from over seventy countries of origin to 22 European countries. Using European Social Survey for the years 2002–2009, we show that immigrants are more likely to be both under- and overeducated than the native born for the jobs that they perform. However, immigrants’ outcomes converge to those of the native born with the years of labor market experience. The mismatch is due to immigrants’ selection and sorting across countries. Notably, origin countries’ quality of human capital, by affecting selection, mostly matters for undereducation of immigrants. Overeducation is determined to a greater extent by destination country economic conditions and labor market institutions. Immigrant-specific policies in destination countries, such as those improving labor market access, positively affect overall matching; however, other policies, such as those improving eligibility or aimed at antidiscrimination may aggravate overeducation by attracting a wider range of educated immigrants.


Aleksynska, M. & Tritah, A. (2013). Occupation–education mismatch of immigrant workers in Europe: Context and policies. Economics of Education Review, 36(1), 229-244. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved April 15, 2021 from .

This record was imported from Economics of Education Review on January 28, 2019. Economics of Education Review is a publication of Elsevier.

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