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Yaghoob Foroutan

Yaghoob Foroutan

Academic rank: Associate Professor
Education: PhD.
Faculty: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Address: Department of Social Sciences, The University of Mazandaran Babolsar, Mazandaran Province, IRAN
Phone: 01155242915


Education's Economic Return in Multicultural Australia: Demographic Analysis
demographic perspective, economic return, education, labour market, migration, multicultural Australia, religion
Researchers Yaghoob Foroutan


This article focuses on the impact of education as the most important human capital endowment in the context of migration, religion, gender and ethnic identity from a demographic perspective. It presents research-based evidence to address such key research questions as whether and how significantly women's education provides equal benefit in the labour market for individuals, based on their migration status, religion, and ethnic identity. The field of this study is the multi-ethnic and multicultural context of Australia with a wide range of ethnic and religious groups of migrants from throughout the world. Preliminary results show that labour market achievement is positively and significantly associated with the educational attainment of individuals, irrespective of their migration status, religious affiliation and ethnicity. However, more comprehensive analysis from comparative perspectives reveals that the positive economic return of education is higher for natives (compared with migrants), for ethnic migrants from developed regions of origin (compared with those from less developed regions of origin) and for non-Muslims (compared with Muslims). The article provides two plausible explanations for these patterns. The first refers to the lack of recognition of overseas qualifications and to the devaluation of foreign education that particularly applies to ethnic migrants from less developed regions. The second relates to disadvantage through structural discrimination against migrants, particularly when their cultural and religious identity, such as Islamic names and dress codes, are distinctively displayed. In sum, this analysis presents further research-based evidence to go beyond the human capital theory in order to explain more appropriately the economic return of women's education in the context of religion and migration from a demographic perspective.