Marie Labussière has successfully defended her PhD thesis with cum laude

Marie Labussière defended her PhD dissertation “Native born but not yet citizen. Citizenship and educational outcomes of the children of immigrants in the Netherlands” on Wednesday 3 November earning the distinction cum laude. An article about her research was also published in the Volkskrant.

She was supervised by Prof. dr. Maarten Vink (Maastricht University/European University Institute) and Prof. dr. Mark Levels (Maastricht University).

Marie’s dissertation investigates the relationship between citizenship and the educational outcomes of native-born children of immigrants in the Netherlands. As in many countries of the world, children born in the Netherlands do not have rights to the citizenship of their country of birth but instead inherit the citizenship of their parents. Little is known about whether and how such citizenship laws affect their legal status and life course. Based on administrative register data, the dissertation uses quantitative methods to map the patterns of citizenship acquisition among the children of immigrants and to analyse its effects on their educational trajectories and performance. Findings indicate that children who acquired Dutch citizenship have a substantial educational advantage over those who are still foreign citizens. Yet the effects of citizenship are not uniform: Dutch citizenship matters especially when acquired in early childhood, and by families facing structural constraints in the host society. The dissertation therefore provides a better understanding of the relevance of citizenship for children of immigrants, taking into account their life course and family environment.