Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Department of Social Sciences - Berlin Graduate School of Social Science

Valeriia Heidemann

Valeriia Heidemann

BGSS Generation 2020



Labor Market Integration and Mental Health of Refugees: The Mediating Role of Family and Gender





Humanitarian migration is an important topic of modern political and social discourse. The United Nations reports a peak of about 70 million forcibly displaced people worldwide, including nearly 26 million refugees (World Migration Report 2020). As those, compelled to leave their homes because of conflict or persecution and went through loss, despair, and trauma, these people are the most in need of assistance and support. Therefore, the social science objective is to depict the main aspects of the refugee integration process for a political agenda to provide adequate support for newcomers in a new cultural and political environment. 
Even though labor market participation is one of the key features of migrant and refugee integration, there is only scarce empirical evidence on gender differences in the impact of employment on refugees' mental health. This doctoral project aims to close this gap in the literature by using the unique longitudinal and representative data on refugees in Germany provided by IAB-BAMF-SOEP. The project is divided into three papers. The first one aims to describe the moderating role of gender on the impact of employment on mental health. In the second paper, I intend to illuminate the role of family structure in the impact of employment on refugee mental health. Finally, the third paper will be dedicated to the interplay of children and family roles as a factor that influences the effect of employment on mental health.