Austria is one of the long-standing European immigration countries. Besides labor immigration, the country has seen several waves of asylum seekers in the past. In the Second Austrian Republic after World War II these include about 200,000 refugees from Hungary in 1956/57, in 1968/69 about 160,000 Czechs and Slovaks fled via Austria, in 1981/82 more than 120,000 refugees came from Poland and many came in the 1990ies after the collapse of the Eastern Bloc and the wars in Former Yugoslavia (among them about 90,000 Bosnians found refuge). While these past asylum seekers mainly came from neighboring regions that previously belonged to the Austrian-Hungarian empire, those who sought refuge more recently since the 2000s originated from increasingly diverse and remote source countries such as Afghanistan, Russia (Chechnya), Iraq, and of course Syria. In contrast to the refugees of the past, these newcomers were not able to build on historical ties and benefit from established communities.
The aim of the project “Labor Market Integration of Migrants in Austria“, supported by funds of the Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Oesterreichische Nationalbank, Anniversary Fund, project number: 17177), is to provide comprehensive and reliable evidence about the labor market situation of different groups of immigrants since the year 2000, with a special focus on the labor market integration of recognized refugees and asylum seekers who received subsidiary protection in Austria. We analyze labor market flows and compare the labor market integration of different waves and groups of immigrants against the contextual backdrop of overall socioeconomic and employment conditions (labor demand), and the evolvement of individual background characteristics of the workforce as a whole.