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Bonding Social Capital, Afghan Refugees, and Early Access to Employment
journal contributionposted on 01.12.2021, 00:00 authored by Matteo VerganiMatteo Vergani, Ihsan YilmazIhsan Yilmaz, Greg BartonGreg Barton, James BarryJames Barry, Galib BashirovGalib Bashirov, S M Barton
This IMR Research Note examines the impact of the level of bonding social capital on access to employment among newly arrived Afghan refugees in Victoria (Australia). Based on a mixed-methods analysis of biographical interviews with 80 Afghan refugees, it examines their use of social capital, year by year, during the first three years after their arrival. Our analysis shows that higher levels of bonding social capital are associated with greater success in finding employment during the first and second year of settlement. In the third year, however, bonding social capital for Afghan refugees in Victoria is no longer a significant predictor of employment. This Research Note helps clarify inconsistent findings in the literature on the effects of social capital on obtaining employment by suggesting that bonding social capital’s impact on refugee employment success changes significantly across the first three years after arrival. This finding has important implications for migration policy and the prioritization of resources toward services for newly arrived refugees.