Using population register data from Norway (n = 209,532) and Sweden (n = 592,491), this study addressed the relationship between partner choice and the timing of first marriage. We considered all migrant-background individuals born between 1972 and 1989 who were either native-born or who immigrated prior to age 18, relative to 10% random samples of the majority populations. The results demonstrate that marital timing patterns of migrant background individuals who married exogamously (that is, with a majority-background spouse or across their global region of origin) were more similar to the majority populations than among those who married endogamously (that is, with another migrant-background individual originating in the same global region). However, among immigrant-background individuals who endogamously married, there was evidence of a shift toward the Scandinavian pattern of later marriage across generations. Taken together the results provide an important starting point for investigations into the family life-courses and social position of children of immigrants in Europe, an increasingly large population subgroup currently entering family formation ages.

Assortative mating, children of immigrants, endogamy, exogamy, marriage timing, second generation,
Acta Sociologica
This work was funded by the European Commission 7th Framework Programme; grant id erc/263829 - Families of migrant origin: a life course perspective (FAMILIFE)
Department of Sociology

Aarskaug Wiik, K, & Holland, J.A. (2018). Partner choice and timing of first marriage among the children of immigrants in Norway and Sweden. Acta Sociologica, 61(2), 143–162. doi:10.1177/0001699317718611