Differences in the probability to fit ocupation job in Portuguese labor market between Brazilians and Palop’s Africans

Gilvan R. Guedes, Brown University
Denise Marques, Centro de Desenvolvimento e Planejamento Regional (CEDEPLAR)

Until the mid 1970's, the number of foreigners residing in Portugal was of small numerical relevance. The de-colonization process that took place after the 1974 revolution led to movements of a great amount of Africans from former Portuguese colonies to Portugal. The 1980's were marked by arrivals of Asians (mainly Indians, Pakistanis and Chinese) and South Americans (particularly Brazilians), diversifying the foreigners' composition in the country. Altough with many similarities, Africans and Brazilians in-migrants seem to be under assymetric influences of cultural perception and legal agreements. This work, based on a combination of theories of attraction/expulsion factors and institutional theory of international migration systems, is guided by two questions. Is there a significant difference in the probability to occupy a high-level job between Africans and Brazilians working in Portuguese labor market? How much of this difference could be reduced if the returns of attributes of both groups are equaled? To answer the first question we used a class of non-linear models, known as Generalized Ordered Models with residual corrected by bias of sample selection (Heckman's correction technique). To answer the second question we estimated equations for the two groups of immigrants and, as a counter factual exercise, equalizing the coefficients of equations for each group, while keeping their attribute differences. The results show that Brazilians are 10% more likely to get a higher level job than Africans from PALOP countries. The simulation reveals that the probability of an African worker occupying a higher-level job would increase by 4% if that worker were treated as a Brazilian. These results seem to be a reflex of differences in cultural perception by Portugal regarding the two groups of imigrants and, as a consequence, differences in the bilateral migration agreements.

Presented in Poster Session 2