Migration and Integration

Research Focus

The research group “Migration and Integration” was established in 2015 to address the increasing importance of immigration for the economy and the society and to strengthen one of the core research focuses of the research division “Labor Markets, Education, Population”. The main aim of the research group is to provide empirical evidence on the causes and consequences of migration and this way inform public policy.

The research group specifically engages in the analysis of the economic and social integration of immigrants and their descendants. Within this focus, the research particularly acknowledges the heterogeneity of immigrants by analyzing how immigrants’ economic, linguistic, and cultural background influences their integration into the labor market and the educational system. Furthermore, the effectiveness of policy measures and reforms targeted at immigrants’ integration is evaluated. In a joint project with the research group Education for the Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, for example, it is analyzed whether participation in training programs fosters the integration of asylum seekers.

In addition, the research group investigates the consequences of immigration for the host countries. A particular emphasis is directed towards analyses on the economic and social consequences of forced migration. Amongst others, the research groups works on a project on the short-term effects of the 2015 refugee crisis for Germany, which is funded by the German Research Foundation. In this project, it is analyzed to what extent the regional distribution of asylum seekers and their accommodation affect societal aspects such as electoral outcomes, real estate markets, and crime.

While most research is directed towards the integration of immigrants and the effects of immigration on the host countries, the research group also addresses the consequences of migration for the origin countries. A particular focus is directed towards analyzing the relationship between migration and remittances, respectively and educational investments in migrants’ origin countries.  

From a methodological point of view, the empirical analyses are mostly based on individual-level micro data, which are often augmented with aggregate data at the country or regional level (of the origin and host country, respectively).