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What role do family relationships play in immigrants' integration process?


How do family relationships in the home and host countries influence opportunity for immigrants? And how can an understanding of this help improve the integration of immigrants into the labor market and society?

This is the research area of Quang Evansluong, guest researcher and Broman-scholar at Gothenburg Research Institute.

The title of his project is Towards a view of transnational family dynamics in immigrants’ entrepreneurial opportunity creation process.

Tell us more about the project.

– Families in the home and the host country contribute to the development of immigrants’ businesses in different ways. Family members provide the labour force for the business. They also accept lower salaries and do voluntary work because of bonding with an immigrant entrepreneur. Even if the presence of family members is pervasive in immigrant entrepreneurship, there is lack of research on how families influences the processes of opportunity creation. The purpose of this project is to examine how immigrant entrepreneurs’ family relationships in the home and the host country facilitate and hinder the process of opportunity creation, says Quang Evansluong.

In what way can your project make a difference or influence our thinking?

– Sweden is becoming a popular destination of immigrants, with the foreign-born population accounting for 14 percent of the total population. Sweden was among the European countries hosting largest amount of asylum seekers. The social challenges that Sweden has been facing are, first, the high unemployment rate among individuals of foreign background and second, the segregation between the native Swedish groups and other ethnic groups is becoming larger. Understanding how individuals of foreign background are connected to their family in Sweden and their home countries and how these connections influence their decisions to be self-employed and how they generate their business ideas and concepts is highly relevant to policy makers working on integrating immigrants into the Swedish labor market and society.

During the fall of 2017 Quang Evansluong will host a number of seminars at Gothenburg Research Institute. The seminars gather both international researchers and practitioners from family business, immigrant entrepreneurship, communications and international business to discuss the influences of immigrants’ families in the home and the host country on their entrepreneurial activities. The seminars cover topics on immigrants’ integration, acculturation, entrepreneurial opportunity creation, family social capital, family embeddedness and institutional embeddedness. Click links for more information.

October 31: Entrepreneurial opportunity as an acculturation process
November 24: The role of family social capital in immigrants’ entrepreneurial opportunity creation processes
December 12: Immigrant's integration from practitioners’ point of view