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Skills on the Move

Migrants in the Survey of Adult Skills

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Migration has been at the centre of political debate across the OECD in recent years. Drawing on data from the OECD Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC), this report provides new evidence on differences in migrants’ characteristics and contexts and considers how these relate to the skills migrants possess. It also examines the relationship between migrants’ skills and their labour and non-labour market outcomes in host countries. Finally, it sheds new light on how migrants’ skills are developed, used and valued in host country labour markets and societies. Results and lessons gleaned from analysis highlight the way forward for future research on this topic.

The report represents an invaluable resource for policy makers across different sectors as they design and implement strategies aimed at promoting the long-term integration of foreign-born populations in the economic and social life of their countries. The analyses presented allow us to identify the skill composition of foreign-born populations, the labour market and broader social outcomes associated with such skills, and the factors that can promote skill acquisition and skill use.

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Measuring migrant's actual skills: Evidence from PIAAC

This chapter describes the literacy, numeracy and problem-solving skills of migrants based on results from the two first rounds of the Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC). Migrants’ skill proficiency is compared with natives’ proficiency and across countries participating in PIAAC. Particular emphasis is placed on the low and high performers, as well as on migrant groups defined on the basis of their migration experience. The chapter also examines the influence of proficiency in the host-country language, and where a migrant’s education was completed, on migrants’ skills in literacy, numeracy and problem solving in technology-rich environments.

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