Social origin

Trends in Absolute Income Mobility in North America and Europe

This paper looks at trends in social mobility in eight wealthy countries and finds significant differences between them. It compares the real incomes of parents and children born between 1960 and 1987, linking the two generations where possible. Where this is not possible, absolute movements between generations are inferred by combining information on moves up … Read more

Measuring educational inequality of opportunity: pupil’s effort matters

This research uses a specially-designed survey in secondary schools in rural Bangladesh to look at the role of student effort in educational achievements and as a factor in overcoming disadvantage and inequality. The researchers looked at the test results of Bangladeshi schoolchildren in mathematics and English and evaluated the importance of effort relative to their … Read more

Inequalities in Children’s Experiences of Home Learning during the COVID-19 Lockdown in England

This paper combines novel data on the time use, home-learning practices and economic circumstances of families with children during the COVID-19 lockdown with pre-lockdown data from the UK Time Use Survey to characterise the time use of children and how it changed during lockdown, and to gauge the extent to which changes in time use … Read more

Estimation of intergenerational mobility in small samples: evidence from German survey data

Using data from the German socio-economic panel, this paper provides new evidence on intergenerational mobility in Germany by focusing on intergenerational association in ranks—i.e. positions, which parents and children occupy in their respective income distributions. We find that the association of children’s ranks with ranks of their fathers is about 0.242 for individual labor earnings … Read more

Formal differentiation at upper secondary education in Finland: subject-level choices and stratified pathways to socio-economic status and unemployment

This paper looks at how Finnish students’ track placement at upper secondary school is associated with their later-life socio-economic status and probability of unemployment using high-quality full population register data. The study finds that choosing advanced maths – in a system where students are given the freedom to make their own subject-level decisions – leads … Read more

Does tracking really affect labour-market outcomes in the long run? Estimating the long-term effects of secondary-school tracking in West Germany

This paper investigates to what extent track attendance in secondary education affects labour-market prospects of West German individuals with similar starting conditions. The article also focuses on whether track attendance has a role in widening social inequality. Using pooled data from two panel studies on West Germans born between 1964 and 1986, the researchers investigate … Read more

Tracking in Israeli high schools: social inequality after 50 years of educational reforms

This paper looks at how the Israeli system of sorting children into one of five programmes for their upper secondary school education affects their higher education attainment and earning prospects in their early thirties. The research is set in the context of three major programmes of education reform that have taken place in Israel since … Read more

Upper secondary school tracking, labour market outcomes and intergenerational inequality in Denmark 

This paper is a comprehensive analysis of how secondary school education of Danish children affects their early job and earning prospects. Using administrative data on more than 50,000 children born in Denmark in 1986,  the researchers looked at whether young people were placed on an academic or vocational track at school and the sort of … Read more

Educational tracking and long-term outcomes by social origin: Seven countries in comparison

This paper uses longitudinal data from seven countries to assess how systems of educational tracking can impact on social mobility. Studies which simply compare comprehensive and tracked systems may be flawed, the research suggests, because of differences in how countries separate students for instructional purposes. The researchers used large-scale longitudinal data from Denmark, England, Finland, … Read more

Compensatory and multiplicative advantages: Social origin, school performance, and stratified higher education enrolment in Finland

This research finds that even in Finland, enrolling in higher education depends on students’ school performance and their parents’ education. The study uses register data from Finland, where students take entrance exams for higher education and where the education system involves both universities and polytechnics, to look at how social origin and school performance is … Read more