Residential choices of foreign highly skilled workers in the Netherlands

1st Dec 2017

Residential choices of foreign highly skilled workers in the Netherlands and the role of neighbourhood and urban regional characteristics

A new paper by Pascal Beckers and Sanne Boschman is now available online



In the international competition for talent, local and national policy makers are keen to better understand the location choices of highly skilled workers in order to design more effective policies geared towards the group’s attraction and retention. In this study, we explain whether and to what extent the local living environment, in particular characteristics at the neighbourhood and urban regional level, affect the residential choices of foreign highly skilled workers. We make use of register data from Statistics Netherlands on the residential locations of all of these migrants who entered the Netherlands between 2000 and 2009. We combine this dataset with data on relevant characteristics at the neighbourhood level as well as with relevant amenities and labour market characteristics at the regional level. We estimate a negative binomial regression model to test which characteristics of neighbourhoods and urban regions are associated with high inflows of foreign highly skilled workers at the neighbourhood level. We find that, besides labour market characteristics, the characteristics of the local environment do matter for location choices of foreign highly skilled workers in the Netherlands. This group tends to settle in higher income, inner city neighbourhoods that offer a high degree of urban vibe. Furthermore, residential choices differ between single and multi-person households and change with duration of stay in the country.


You can access and read the full paper here


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