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Measuring the link between intergenerational occupational mobility and earnings: evidence from 8 European Countries

Michele Raitano () and Francesco Vona ()

No 2011-03, Documents de Travail de l'OFCE from Observatoire Francais des Conjonctures Economiques (OFCE)

Abstract: This paper provides a novel glance on the relationship between family background and earnings applying a synthetic index of social mobility built on distributions of parental and offspring occupational statuses. Using the EU-SILC dataset for 8 countries, our analysis shows that country differences mainly concern residual background correlations, left after controlling for background-related intervening factors such as education and occupation. Significant residual correlations, observed in the UK and in Southern countries, mask respectively penalties to upward mobility and an insurance against downward mobility. Insignificant residual effects encompass significant penalties to both downward and upward mobility in Germany and France, a parachute for self-employed in Ireland and no patterns in Nordic countries. In quantile regressions, residual background correlations appear to increase along the earnings distribution. Even if we are not able to provide causal explanations, we suggest that in unequal countries results would hardly agree with a standard human capital explanation.

Keywords: intergenerational occupational mobility; index of social mobility; economic returns to intergenerational occupational mobility; international comparison. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D31 I21 J24 J31 J62 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-eur
Date: 2011-03
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Journal Article: Measuring the link between intergenerational occupational mobility and earnings: evidence from eight European countries (2015) Downloads
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