For more than two decades, right-wing parties have been campaigning to make it more difficult to obtain Danish citizenship. But now a new study suggests that tightening the criteria may have a negative effect on integration.
Extensive research conducted by the BUILD Institute at Aalborg University shows that immigrants from non-western countries who received Danish citizenship in the 1990s tend to perform far better than those who did not.
The study assessed the progress of 65,000 immigrants (and their descendants) from countries in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Eastern Europe, who lived in Denmark in 1995.
For the purpose of the study, they were divided into two groups: those who became nationals between 1995 and 1999 and those who remained non-nationals by 2020.
Higher levels of education, employment, income and way of life
At the end of the survey in 2020, it turned out that 58 percent of the immigrants who received Danish citizenship in the late 1990s had a job, against 40 percent of those who did not.
Immigrants with Danish passports were more likely to take a further education: 50 per cent compared with 29 per cent of those without citizenship.
Furthermore, those with a passport were more likely to own their homes and have a higher income, while those without were more likely to live in areas with a high ethnic minority population.
The highest achievers tend to be immigrants from Muslim countries in the Middle East and North Africa, while women are more likely to achieve results than men.
Informative statement in the Folketing
In the late 1990s, it became much easier to become a Danish citizen, and the study has therefore been able to assess how important it has been for the immigrant’s life to become a citizen.
It helps to inform Parliament. Members of Parliament ask whether becoming a citizen makes you feel more open to integration, or were you already so set before you applied?
However, it can be argued that it was mostly resourceful and integrated people who received Danish citizenship in the 1990s.
They had determined, on average, higher levels of education, employment, and income when they applied.
SStudy Leader: It makes a difference
“I’ve been looking at whether it makes a difference that people have been granted citizenship. And it does, ”states study leader, Professor Hans Skifter Andersen.
“Those who obtained citizenship had more often come to work and had a higher income.”
Andersen warned that the study was careful not to inflate the numbers by including immigrants who already had a job before the study began in 1995.
MPs: But what about immigrants’ greater tendency towards crime and hatred
“The study is immediately positive because it shows that those who obtain citizenship are better integrated than those who do not have citizenship,” says Lars Aslan Rasmussen, relevant rapporteur for the ruling Social Democratic Party. Most of its left-wing allies agreed.
However, Ramussen does not think it should be much easier to become a Danish citizen: “Regardless of what the research shows about what people earn and whether they take an education, we can still see that there is great inconsistency in relation to their attitudes to gender. . and homosexuality. It is a problem in a society like Denmark. ”
Marcus Knuth, his Conservative counterpart, acknowledged the potential of making it easier to promote integration, but was concerned about the impact on crime.
“We can see that we have some nationalities, such as Somalis, Iraqis and Afghans, who commit crimes after gaining citizenship. The positive effect for me is completely overshadowed by this – especially the violent crime statistics, “he said.
Source: The Nordic Page