Effects of Gender and Origin on Overqualification in the Swedish Labor Market

Catherine L. Thorkelson, Princeton University
Urban Lindgren, UmeƄ University

This study examines the extent and determinants of overqualification in Sweden, with emphasis on the effects of gender and national origin. Based on longitudinal register data for individuals employed in 2003 and 2007, we test the role of country-specific human capital in explaining overqualification. Using binary logistic regression techniques we find that individuals born outside of Sweden have much higher risk of overqualification, especially those from Eastern Europe, Africa, Asia and Latin America, controlling for human capital differences. We find a higher risk of overqualification for women within both native- and foreign-born groups, but also a higher probability of improving job match over the period 2003 to 2007. However, there is no increased probability of improving job match among non-Western immigrants, indicating that their disadvantaged position in the Swedish labor market improves little over the period studied.

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Presented in Poster Session 5