Does ethnic concentration influence gender role views? A study across first and second generation ethnic groups in England and Wales

Publication type

Conference Paper


Understanding Society Scientific Conference 2017, 11-13 July 2017, University of Essex, Colchester, UK


Publication date

July 12, 2017


Views on gender roles, as well as changes in these views over time, have been a matter of great interest to researchers. In Western Europe, this has gained particular relevance following the arrival of migrants that come from countries where gender inequality is greater and where individuals hold more traditional views on the role of men and women in society. A key question is to what extent these cultural specificities that migrants bring with themselves – which have been shown to have, for example, negative consequences for education and labour market opportunities (Davis and Greenstein 2009; Khoudja and Fleischmann, 2015; Khoudja and Platt, 2016) – are maintained or not over time and what promotes this. This study explores one of the possible mechanisms behind the persistence of traditional gender roles among ethnic groups: ethnic concentration. According to theories of neighbourhood effects, neighbourhoods are spaces of interaction, as well as of transmission of beliefs and ways of doing. These might impact individuals, with a more or less coercive effect (Galster, 2012).

Using data from the II Wave of the United Kingdom Housing Longitudinal Study (UKHLS) in combination with aggregated Census data attached to individuals, this paper explores the extent to which first and second ethnic minority groups residing in areas with a higher share of co-ethnics have a higher probability of holding traditional views. Using an approach that partly tackles the problem of selectivity and endogeneity (instrumental variable approach), preliminary findings show that this is the case for Indians and Bangladeshis.





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