Ethnic and educational homogamy in Luxembourg

Aigul Alieva, Anne Hartung

Social scientists report a strong tendency among individuals to form family or partnership with individuals possessing similar features, a phenomenon known in sociology as “homogamy”. Most often these similarities go along the socio-economic and ethnic lines. Looking at this trend over the past century, initially, spouses were much more likely to form homogamous unions. This tendency has somewhat declined between 1940 and 1960. In other words, there are more families where one of the partners had higher or lower education than the spouse. This tendency started to reverse again in the late 1970s, partners became more similar either by their educational or occupational status. Until now, a majority of the studies confirm this trend across Europe.


Alieva, A. & Hartung, A. (2010). Ethnic and educational homogamy in Luxembourg (Vivre au Luxembourg. Chroniques de l’enquête PSELL-3/2008 Nr. 71). Differdange. Centre d’études de populations, de pauvreté et de politiques socio-économiques (CEPS/INSTEAD).

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