The Changing Profile of Arab Peoples in the U.S.: New Evidence from the 2000 Census

Andrzej Kulczycki, University of Alabama at Birmingham
A. Peter Lobo, New York City Department of City Planning

We assess the demographic and socio-economic characteristics of Arab Americans by nativity and ancestry over the last three decennial censuses using 5% PUMS data. We also compare these characteristics with the total U.S. population over the same period. We define Arab Americans by ancestry and birthplace. Over 1980-2000, the Arab American population doubled in size to about 1.4 million and became more diverse, dominated less by Lebanese/Syrian ancestries. In the 1980s and 1990s, Arab Americans tended to be younger and had more intact family structures than the US population overall. They also tended to be more educated and to earn higher incomes, although foreign-born women had notably poorer labor force outcomes. We will examine if these trends hold true for 2000 as well and if overall, Arab Americans continue to fare well on many indicators of socio-economic assimilation.

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Presented in Session 109: Immigration and Diversity