Pathways to Success: uncovering the potentials of children of immigrant descent

Children of immigrants and their successful careers within Swiss cities and in international comparison

In this project, we focus the educational and professional careers of Turkish and former Yugoslavian second generation descendants in the cities of Basle, Zurich, Geneva and Lausanne. Our aim is to identify main factors - e.g. personal, social but also institutional - influencing educational trajectories as well as professional careers and professional success in different areas of the labor market.

In a first step, the project looks at quantitative data gathered in the research project “The integration of the European Second Generation” (TIES). The main part of the study consists of hundred qualitative in-depth interviews with people of Turkish and former Yugoslavian origin as well as a comparison group of native, who are working in different professional sectors (business, teaching, local politics). A particular focus in the analyses of the empirical data is put on the potential influence of urban contexts on successful careers of people of immigrant and low socio-economic background. Additionally, the Swiss data is compared with the data collected in the other European countries.

Project team: Rosita Fibbi (project leader) Philipp Schnell and Robin Stünzi

Research projected funded by the Stiftung Mercator Schweiz.


The videos in short version and surtitled in German



SCHNELL, Philipp and FIBBI, Rosita, 2016. Getting Ahead: Educational and Occupational Trajectories of the ‘New’ Second-Generation in Switzerland. Journal of International Migration and Integration. Vol. 17, n° 4, pp. 1085‑1107.

SCHNELL, Philipp and FIBBI, Rosita, 2016. Unequal Pathways. School-to-Work Trajectories for Children of Turkish and Western-Balkan Origin in Switzerland and Austria. Swiss Journal of Sociology. Vol. 42, n° 2, pp. 266–290

Parcours et formation

Le monde professionnel

Réussite solidaire ou solitaire?

Succès ordinaires - version longue