Immigrant women’s economic outcomes in Europe: The importance of religion and traditional gender roles

Agnieszka Kanas, Katrin Müller

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This article contributes to previous research on immigrant integration by examining how religiosity and gender roles in European countries influence immigrant women’s labor market outcomes. Moreover, we extend theoretical work on the importance of the receiving country’s norms and values by hypothesizing and testing whether receiving countries’ influence varies with immigrant women’s religiosity and gender-role attitudes. Using the European Social Survey data and multilevel regression models, we find that religious immigrant women participate less in the labor market and work fewer hours than nonreligious immigrant women. Immigrant women’s traditional gender-role attitudes partly explain the negative relationship between individual religiosity and labor market outcomes. While the receiving country’s religiosity is negatively related to immigrant women’s labor market outcomes, this negative relationship is significantly weaker for religious and gender-traditional immigrant women than for nonreligious and gender-egalitarian women. These findings suggest that the economic benefits of residing in countries that support female employment are limited to immigrant women who are ready and positioned to embrace gender-egalitarian norms and values.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1231-1264
Number of pages34
JournalInternational Migration Review
Issue number4
Early online date20 Apr 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
An earlier version of this manuscript was presented at the International Sociological Association RC28 Spring Meeting in Frankfurt, Germany (March 21?23, 2019), Fourth International ESS Conference, Mannheim University (April 15?17, 2019), and the ISOL seminar in Amsterdam, the Netherlands (May 29, 2019). The author(s) received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2021.

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