Cultural and social integration of British immigrants and ethnic minorities: exploring ethnic and generational differences in gender role attitudes, social networks, neighborhood attachment and work values -PhD thesis-

Publication type

Thesis/Degree/Other Honours


Publication date

June 1, 2019


Large-scale immigration and increased ethnic diversity have generated renewed concerns about ethnic inequalities of immigrant and minority groups in Britain in areas such as housing, educational qualifications, labor markets and health etc. Although substantial research in Britain has investigated inter-generational social mobility of ethnic minorities in terms of various labor market outcomes such as employment rates and access to salariat class, economic integration does not necessarily lead to cultural and social integration, and there is no research that systematically investigates cultural and social integration of British ethnic minority immigrants. To fill this gap, this thesis explores cultural and social integration of British ethnic minority immigrants by exploring gender role attitudes, social networks, neighborhood attachment and work values of first and second generation immigrants. To this end, this thesis uses a large-scale nationally representative dataset: Understanding Society: United Kingdom Household Longitudinal Study and a range of quantitative analytic methods such as multivariate regression analysis, Oaxaca decomposition analysis etc. Overall, this thesis shows complex and nuanced patterns of cultural and social integration, which vary with ethnic groups, immigrant generation, demographic, socioeconomic and neighborhood characteristics. Most second generation ethnic minorities tend to have more egalitarian gender role attitudes and more ethnically diverse social networks than their first generation counterparts. Although the generational differences suggest positive signs of ethnic integration into host society cultural and social lives, the patterns of integration vary significantly with ethnic minorities' social and neighborhood characteristics. These findings indicate that conceptual models and empirical studies of immigrants' cultural and social integration over time are over-simplified and need to take into account that these processes may unfold differently in different sociodemographic groups and localities. Recognizing this diversity, as well as the temporal dynamism of ethnic minorities' cultural and social integration, is important because public debates about immigration often present a static and over-simplified narrative that immigrants and ethnic minorities choose not to adhere to mainstream British values, attitudes and life styles.







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