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The Effects of Human Capital and Social Capital on Immigrant Wages and Labor Market Incorporation in the United States and Japan

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Abstract:

A common model of labor market incorporation among immigrants in the United States analyzes earnings as a function of standard human capital variables, such as age, education, language competence, and employment experience in the host society. Yet, whether this model is applicable in other countries, where immigrants encounter different labor market conditions, is unclear. Drawing on data from a comparative study of immigrant labor in the United States and Japan, this paper estimates multivariate models of wage determination among samples of foreign workers in San Diego County, United States and Hamamatsu, Japan. In addition to the usual human capital variables, our models also incorporate social capital variables. Social capital variables are rarely introduced in US wage determination arguments; however, such variables may contribute to earnings in the US and may also prove important abroad. Findings reveal important variations in the explanatory power of individual-level, human capital and group-level, social capital from one national context to the other. In San Diego, human capital variables have a greater effect on foreign workers’ wages, while social capital variables do not. In contrast, social capital significantly increases workers’ wages in Hamamatsu, while human capital does not. The paper draws on data from ethnographic studies in Japan and the US to suggest explanations for these divergent results. More generally, the paper illustrates the importance of a comparative framework that considers the context of reception (host societies) in determining labor market outcomes for immigrant workers.

Most Common Document Word Stems:

worker (170), immigr (115), foreign (113), japan (97), capit (96), labor (87), wage (87), social (85), employ (76), job (66), earn (60), work (58), ethnic (54), human (54), san (53), diego (53), market (51), variabl (51), japanes (50), nikkeijin (47), hamamatsu (42),

Author's Keywords:

Labor Markets, Human Capital, Social Capital, Immigration
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MLA Citation:

Tsuda, Takeyuki., Cornelius, Wayne. and Valdez, Zulema. "The Effects of Human Capital and Social Capital on Immigrant Wages and Labor Market Incorporation in the United States and Japan" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, Atlanta Hilton Hotel, Atlanta, GA, Aug 16, 2003 <Not Available>. 2009-05-26 <http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p107610_index.html>

APA Citation:

Tsuda, T. , Cornelius, W. and Valdez, Z. , 2003-08-16 "The Effects of Human Capital and Social Capital on Immigrant Wages and Labor Market Incorporation in the United States and Japan" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, Atlanta Hilton Hotel, Atlanta, GA Online <.PDF>. 2009-05-26 from http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p107610_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: A common model of labor market incorporation among immigrants in the United States analyzes earnings as a function of standard human capital variables, such as age, education, language competence, and employment experience in the host society. Yet, whether this model is applicable in other countries, where immigrants encounter different labor market conditions, is unclear. Drawing on data from a comparative study of immigrant labor in the United States and Japan, this paper estimates multivariate models of wage determination among samples of foreign workers in San Diego County, United States and Hamamatsu, Japan. In addition to the usual human capital variables, our models also incorporate social capital variables. Social capital variables are rarely introduced in US wage determination arguments; however, such variables may contribute to earnings in the US and may also prove important abroad. Findings reveal important variations in the explanatory power of individual-level, human capital and group-level, social capital from one national context to the other. In San Diego, human capital variables have a greater effect on foreign workers’ wages, while social capital variables do not. In contrast, social capital significantly increases workers’ wages in Hamamatsu, while human capital does not. The paper draws on data from ethnographic studies in Japan and the US to suggest explanations for these divergent results. More generally, the paper illustrates the importance of a comparative framework that considers the context of reception (host societies) in determining labor market outcomes for immigrant workers.

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Document Type: .PDF
Page count: 29
Word count: 8509
Text sample:
The Differential Effects of Human Capital and Social Capital on Foreign Workers’ Wages in the United States and Japan By Takeyuki Tsuda Associate Director Center for Comparative Immigration Studies University of California San Diego La Jolla CA 92093-0510 ttsuda@weber.ucsd.edu Wayne Cornelius Director Center for Comparative Immigration Studies University of California San Diego La Jolla CA 92093-0510 wcorneli@ucsd.edu Zulema Valdez Visiting Research Fellow Center for Comparative Immigration Studies University of California San Diego La Jolla CA 92093-0510 zvaldez@weber.ucsd.edu Abstract A
Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies. UNITED NATIONS CITATION Waldinger Roger (1997) “Social Capital or Social Closure?--Immigrant Networks in the Labor Market.” Lewis Center for Regional Policy Studies University of California-Los Angeles Working Paper No. 6. Weiner Michael (1997) “The Representation of Absence and the Absence of Representation: Korean Victims of the Atomic Bomb ” pp. 79-107 in Michael Weiner ed. Japan's Minorities: The Illusion of Homogeneity. New York: Routledge. Yamamoto Kenji (1994) "Nikkei Burajirujin no Rodo Ido" (The


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