Economics & Sociology

ISSN: 2071-789X eISSN: 2306-3459 DOI: 10.14254/2071-789X
Index PUBMS: f5512f57-a601-11e7-8f0e-080027f4daa0
Article information
Title: Cultural Integration and Occupational Achievement among Mexican Immigrants along the US-Mexico Border
Issue: Vol. 9, No 1, 2016
Published date: 03-2016 (print) / 03-2016 (online)
Journal: Economics & Sociology
ISSN: 2071-789X, eISSN: 2306-3459
Authors: Rojhat B. Avsar
Keywords: Cultural integration, Mexican immigrants, English skills, occupational distribution
DOI: 10.14254/2071-789X.2016/9-1/9
Index PUBMS: 5d620e82-0297-11e8-94c4-fa163e5d4f72
Language: English
Pages: 129-138 (10)
JEL classification: J31, J61, J71, B52

This paper investigates the impact of English speaking ability and age at arrival in the U.S., considered as two major proxies for the degree of social/cultural integration, on occupational achievements of Mexican immigrants in two heavily populated border counties, El Paso (TX) and Pima (AZ). Our various empirical findings point out two major tendencies: first, English fluency appears to be the most important determinant of the position of Mexican immigrants on the occupational ladder. Second, early migration to the U.S. appears to further improve the position of Mexican immigrants in the labor market indicating that there may be components of (cultural) integration/assimilation, which we call “Americanization premium,” that are not fully captured by English proficiency alone. Although such premium exists, its magnitude, interestingly, varies between El Paso and Pima. Finally, we will provide a potential explanation for this puzzle.