Integration of youth in Sweden

– in a multidimensional perspective. A research project within the research program migration and integration.

Project leader: Jan O. Jonsson External link.

Period: 2020–2023

Seat of learning: Institute for Futures Studies

Project title: Integration of youth in Sweden in a multidimensional perspective (SEMI)


What is the project about?

This project takes a multidimensional perspective on integration, following the evolution of its structural, cultural, social and psychological dimensions for young people over time (ages 14-22). We rely on large-scale longitudinal data (CILS4EU) collected from youth themselves, and matched to register data on educational and labour market outcomes.

We include immigrant youth and youth who were born in the destination country to immigrant parents, but also youth with native-born parents, and we regard integration as a multi-sided process, which is dependent on the interaction between these groups and the majority. The focus is primarily on Sweden, but we will also draw on CILS4EU data from England, Germany, and the Netherlands, as well as Norway for international comparisons to provide leverage to our findings.

Our large sample (N=5,025 in Sweden) allows us to do justice to the great diversity within the immigrant group, both in terms of characteristics such as origin country, gender, ethnicity, time of immigration and socioeconomic resources, but also in terms of integration experiences and aspirations.

Research questions

The over-arching aims are:

  1. To study the integration of youth of different origins in Sweden both as differences across generations (i.e., in relation to parents) and as change over individual life-time
  2. To do so by studying different dimensions of integration (structural, social, and cultural integration, as well as psychological adaptation)
  3. To take into account how integration is influenced by socioeconomic inequalities and segregation
  4. To address the theoretical questions why integration vary across origin and destination countries

We apply different quantitative statistical methods for our analyses, from description of frequencies to various multivariate techniques, such as OLS regression, SEM (structural equation models), and SAOMs (stochastic actor-oriented models)

Project participants

The project includes, in addition to researchers at the Institute for Futures Studies, also researchers from Umeå University and the Swedish Institute for Social Research (SOFI) at Stockholm University. Most are sociologists, but the research group also contains expertise in social psychology and psychology.

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