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Intergenerational mobility in education: Is Africa different?

Théophile T. Azomahou and Eleni Yitbarek ()

Contemporary Economic Policy, 2021, vol. 39, issue 3, 503-523

Abstract: This study analyzes the intergenerational transmission of education in nine Sub‐Saharan African countries, using nationally representative household survey data on parents of adult individuals. It provides the levels and trends of intergenerational persistence of years of schooling over 50 years, and it also ranks the nine countries relative to other nations. There is a declining cohort trend in the intergenerational persistence of education, particularly after the 1960s. Nevertheless, the education of parents remains a strong determinant of the educational outcomes of children. The analysis also documents country heterogeneity (intergenerational educational mobility varies significantly across countries) and a marked gender effect: daughter's education attainment is more correlated with her parents' education than that of sons. From a policy perspective, our result points to the importance of targeted redistributive policies and the expansion of secondary education to improve mobility.

Date: 2021
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