Time and Generation: Parents’ Integration and Children’s School Performance in Sweden, 1989–2011

Christopher D. Smith, Jonas Helgertz, Kirk Scott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


A central element of assimilation theory is that increasing time and number of previous immigrant generations in a host country leaves immigrants and their children more integrated and capable of navigating the host society. However, the underperformance of some immigrant groups in Sweden calls into question this relationship. Additionally, many studies regard intermarriage as an outcome of immigrant integration and rarely investigate whether integration continues after intermarriage. Using population level data from the Swedish interdisciplinary panel on 22 cohorts of ninth-grade students born between 1973 and 1995, we examine the effect of parents’ time in Sweden on their children’s grade point average using family fixed effects. Additionally, we investigate whether this relationship differs between “2.0” and “2.5” generation children. We find, generally, that parents’ time in Sweden increases their children’s educational performance, though some variation by parents’ region of origin exists. This supports the idea that integration experiences in immigrant families can be transmitted across generations. Further, this generally holds for both the 2.0 and 2.5 generation children. This relationship among the 2.5 generation is notable as previous studies using a family-based approach looking at the intergenerational transmission of integration have largely focused on the children of two foreign-born parents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)719-750
Number of pages32
JournalEuropean Journal of Population
Issue number4
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, The Author(s).


  • Assimilation
  • Family fixed effects
  • Integration
  • Intergenerational transmission
  • Intermarriage

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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