Another model minority? Immigrant scholars from the former Soviet Union in Israeli academia

Victoria Kot, Miri Yemini, Katerina Bodovski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Three decades have passed since the start of the largest immigration wave in Israeli history, comprised of around one million Russian-speaking Jews from the FSU. This study examines the professional and personal experiences of individuals from the “1.5 generation”–those who immigrated in childhood–now employed as senior faculty in Israeli academia. Recent studies have examined the integration of immigrants from this “1.5 generation” into Israeli society, and their sense of identity and belonging. However, no study has focused on the integration of this generation within academia. The study uses a narrative approach, emphasising participants’ stories from their own perspectives, focusing on subjective processes of integration and professional identity formation. We employ the notion of cultural, social, and resilience capitals to shed light on integration hurdles faced by immigrants–from a community largely perceived as a model minority within Israeli society–when accessing elite social spaces. Our findings highlight differences in the cultural, social, and resilience capitals required and valued in their new environment. Our participants shared how they creatively forged new forms of capitals, sometimes by assimilating completely, sometimes by rebelling and emphasising their separate identity, as well as developing super resilience capital based on international connections.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalEducation Inquiry
StateAccepted/In press - 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Public Administration


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