Age at Immigration, Generational Status, and Mortality Among Children of Immigrant Mothers: A Longitudinal Analysis of Siblings

Neil Mehta , University of Michigan
Pekka Martikainen, University of Helsinki
Agneta Cederstrom, Stockholm University

Previous studies document that age at immigration and generational status predict socioeconomic outcomes among children of immigrants. Whether these characteristics are related to mortality is unknown. Leveraging variation within sib-ships, we evaluated the association of age at immigration and generational status (first or second) with mortality among children of immigrant mothers to Sweden. Data included 133,819 sib-ships aged 15+ from the total Swedish population followed during 1990-2009. Population-average and sibling fixed-effect regressions were estimated; the latter controlling for unobserved factors shared by siblings. Models indicated that the foreign born experienced 17% higher mortality compared to their Swedish-born siblings. This excess risk was evident for external and non-external causes of death. This study provides robust evidence that among children of immigrants being foreign born was associated with a long-term mortality penalty compared to being born in the host country.

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 Presented in Session 4. Migration and Health/Well-being