Intergenerational Mobility of Asian Post-1965 Immigrants and the New Second Generation in the United States, 1980 to 2005

Julie Park, University of Southern California

To measure the socioeconomic progress across immigrant generations, most researchers have observed all generations at a single point in time. However, to measure true intergenerational mobility, the status of the first generation must be compared to their children, the second generation, when they reach a comparable age 25 to 30 years later. Hence, the first generation must be observed at a different point in history than the second generation. In this paper, intergenerational mobility is addressed across educational attainment, occupational attainment, and poverty status for the five largest Asian foreign-born populations in 1980 (Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Asian Indian, and Vietnamese). Immigrant parents of the second generation and young immigrant children are observed in 1980 and then their children are observed again in 2005. Because of the substantial changes occurring in overall socioeconomic conditions between periods our analysis also controls for the status of an Asian third-generation reference group.

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Presented in Session 63: Socioeconomic Attainment and Assimilation of Asian Americans