Anne Kuschel: Sustainable Labor Market Integration of First Generation Migrant Groups: The Quest for the ‘Migrant-Organization Fit’

Project Summary
Europe is experiencing a substantial influx of first time migrants. In 2015, 2.6 million first residence permits to third country nationals were granted1, whereas in 2016, 1.2 million first time asylum seekers were registered2, many of whom are expected to be granted asylum. Many call to speedily integrate these migrants in the labor market, for social and moral reasons, and to counterbalance host societies’ costs for reception and integration, estimated to range between 17 and 22 billion Euros in 2016 in the EU. However, migrants experience barriers in entering the labor market and in their career trajectories. Studies show that migrant group characteristics influence their chances in the labor market and that diversity management approaches to migrant workers in organizations differ. Nevertheless, little is known about which combination(s) of individual and organizational factors facilitate the successful recruitment and retention (R&R) of migrant employees in European labor markets. This PhD project aims to fill this gap by combining sociological knowledge on (in)formal diversity management practices in organizations with social psychological knowledge focusing on cultural differences of first generation migrants.

Research Design and Data
Multiple case studies (organizations), different samples (ethnicity, migrants’ length of stay in host society), and mixed method research. Studies 1 and 2 are qualitative: document analysis and qualitative semi-structured interviews with HRM managers (N=2-6); middle managers (N=84); and first generation migrant and native employees (N=30) in 8 teams. Both studies will analyze the cultural distance of managers and native employees compared to those of first time migrant employees to identify combinations of organizational and individual determinants of the migrant-organization fit. Studies 3 and 4 are predominantly quantitative.

PhD Student
Anne Kuschel

Prof.dr. Rafael Wittek (University of Groningen)
Dr. N. (Nina) Hansen (University of Groningen)
Dr. L. (Liesbet) Heyse (University of Groningen)

October 1, 2017 - September 30, 2021

Innovation Fund, Faculty of Behavioral and Social Sciences, University of Gronigen


Department of Sociology
Faculty of Behavioral and Social SciencesUniversity of Groningen
Grote Rozenstraat 31, 9712 TG Groningen, The Netherlands
Phone: +31 50 36 36282

Secretary: Ms. Lije Gong (+31 50 36 36469,