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News Release


UAlbany Study Reports on America’s Immigrants: Who They Are, Where They Live
Thirteen metro regions house more than half the nation's immigrants

Contact: Karl Luntta (518) 437-4980

ALBANY, N.Y. (June 25, 2003) -- America's new immigrants are increasingly suburban -- with immigrant growth in the suburbs far surpassing growth in cities -- according to a new report by the University at Albany's Mumford Center for Comparative Urban and Regional Research.

The report, America’s Newcomers, finds that the volume of immigration is uneven around the nation. “Some parts of the country are relatively untouched, while neighborhoods in certain areas have been entirely rebuilt and repopulated with immigrants,” said Center Director John Logan. "In the metro areas with the largest foreign-born populations, immigrants live in neighborhoods where 30-50 percent of residents were born abroad or speak a language other than English at home. But their levels of income and education, and the quality of neighborhoods where they live, are not very different from those of U.S.-born members of the same racial or ethnic group."

Logan said, “The major impact of immigration is its change in the mix of racial and ethnic groups in a region. In the San Francisco Bay Area, for example, where a large share of immigrants is from Asia, immigration tends to lift up average education and income levels. In an area like Los Angeles where Mexicans are the majority of immigrants, the new population tends to have education and income levels that are below average.”

The new report also finds:

• Just 13 metropolitan regions including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and the San Francisco Bay Area house more than half the foreign-born population.

• Immigrants have a similar socioeconomic profile to that of persons of the same race/ethnicity born in the U.S. Among blacks they are doing better than natives. Among all groups they have a lower unemployment rate.

The full report can be found at

For data on the numbers of foreign-born persons, immigrants who arrived in the 1990-2000 decade, and persons who speak a language other than English at home, see the Mumford Center’s New Americans web pages:

For data on immigration by race and Hispanic origin and information about the neighborhoods where these people live, see our Separate and Unequal pages:

About the Lewis Mumford Center for Comparative Urban and Regional Research
Recognized as one of the great urbanists of the 20th century, Lewis Mumford endorsed the creation of the Lewis Mumford Center for Comparative Urban and Regional Research in 1988. Under the leadership of Director John Logan, the Center currently focuses on four key initiatives: 1) Global Neighborhoods, 2) the Urban Historical Initiative, 3) the China Urban Research Network; and 4) the Hudson-Mohawk Regional Workshop. Each of these projects examines the impact of global changes on the U.S. metropolis and civil society, probes the 19th and early 20th Century roots of present-day cities and suburbs, and addresses urban change in other parts of the world, mostly notably China. Visit the Mumford Center at

Established in 1844 and designated a center of the State University of New York in 1962, the University at Albany's broad mission of excellence in undergraduate and graduate education, research and public service engages 17,000 diverse students in eight degree-granting schools and colleges. The University is engaged in a $500 million fundraising campaign, the most ambitious in its history, with the goal of placing it among the nation's top 30 public research universities by the end of the decade. For more information about this nationally ranked University, visit

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