Myong Sook Kim


Labour Market Re-entry among UK-born Ethnic Minority Women: The Effects of Timing and Residential Choices

PhD summary

Untangling women’s employment dynamics is a complex task. One of the challenges may lie in the nature of life events, such as fertility, housing and employment transitions, that have been found to be inter-connected in recent studies. Considering the residential segregation that some ethnic minorities are over-represented in deprived inner-city areas, the choice of residence is particularly important to explain employment outcomes among ethnic minority groups. Adding further complexity is the role of poor health that is associated with the ethnic residential segregation.

Using Understanding Society data (UKHLS, 2009-2015), this study aims to investigate the possibility of synchronicity between women’s fertility decisions, residential change, health, and employment outcomes. The study extends previous research by addressing issues of selectivity and endogeneity, relating to family size and place of residence, as potential determinants of employment patterns. While childbearing and residential context may shape employment patterns, it is equally likely that other, potentially unobserved factors may simultaneously influence women’s employment, childbearing and residential decisions (e.g. ‘family-orientation’ or group-specific gender ideologies). By taking such unobserved factors into account, this study will address the issue of bias and draw substantive conclusions. To this end, I will apply event history analysis to longitudinal data in the multi-level modelling framework. 


September 2017 – September 2020


This PhD study is funded by the Social Statistics Department in the School of Social Sciences, which receives financial support from the Research Councils UK.


Contact details

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