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Jung, Nahri (2017) ECONOMIC INTEGRATION OF IMMIGRANTS IN THE UNITED STATES. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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The primary purpose of this study was to examine the effect of human capital (e.g., English ability and educational attainment) and social capital (e.g., ethnic bonding capital and bridging social capital to main society) on the economic integration (e.g. Income, employment, occupation prestige, and welfare utilization) of immigrant in the United State. The current study addressed the following hypotheses: 1) Immigrants’ human capital would have an effect on the economic integration of immigrants, 2) Immigrants’ human capital would have an indirect effect on the economic integration of immigrants via ethnic bonding social capital, and 3) Immigrants’ human capital would have an indirect effect on the economic integration of immigrants via bridging social capital to mainstream. It was also hypothesized that the indirect effect of human capital on immigrants’ economic integration will be different, depending on the types of social capital. To address these hypotheses, secondary data analysis was conducted, using data from the Immigration and Intergenerational Mobility in Metropolitan Los Angeles Survey (IIMMLA), which investigated assimilation patterns among six Latino and Asian groups in the Los Angeles metropolitan area in 2004. Given that this study aimed to examine the roles that human and social capital play in the process of immigrants’ economic integration into the host society, the current study focused on the 1st/1.5th, and 2nd generations (N=3,440). Using Mplus 7, structural equation modeling (SEM) path analyses were conducted to test theoretical mediation models. The results, first, showed that immigrants’ human capital (education attainment and English ability) had a positive effect on their economic integration such as income, prestige occupation, employment, and welfare utilization. Second, immigrants’ ethnic bonding and bridging social capitals had a positive effect on income, but this positive effect of social capital was not detected for other economic integration outcomes. Third, education attainment had a positive effect on both ethnic bonding and bridging social capital, whereas English ability had mixed effects on social capital; English ability decreased ethnic bonding social capital, but increased bridging social capital to mainstream society. As a result, lastly, there was two positive indirect effects of human capital via social capital on income (English→ bridging social capital→ income, and Education attainment→ bridging social capital→ income), and one negative pathway of human capital to income (English→ bonding social capital→ income). Implications and limitations were discussed.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Jung, Nahrinaj26@pitt.edunaj260000-0001-7633-0063
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairNewhill, Christina/
Committee MemberKoeske, Gary/
Rauktis, Mary/
Date: 28 August 2017
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 2 August 2017
Approval Date: 28 August 2017
Submission Date: 28 August 2017
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 140
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Social Work > Social Work
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Immigrants, Social capital, Human capital, Economic integration
Date Deposited: 28 Aug 2017 15:35
Last Modified: 28 Aug 2017 15:35


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