This paper tests the hypothesis that social networks are crucial for regional recruitment and inflows of foreign labour. New survey data on 971 firms located in Region Southern Denmark show that the predominant recruitment method of foreign labour was through networks. Danish municipal data from 1997–2006 furthermore reveal spatial sorting since initial shares of employees with a foreign background out of total regional employment predict foreign labour inflow rates to regional employment. Thus, social networks appear crucial for the recruitment and inflows of foreign labour, suggesting that employee referrals and information about vacancies in local job markets are also important for foreign labour.
Papers in Regional Science, 2012, Vol 91, Issue 4, p. 795-821