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Intergenerationalities: Some Educational Questions on Quality, Quantity and Opportunity

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  • Kanbur, Ravi

Abstract

This paper raises a number of issues in thinking about and addressing the intergenerational transmission of disadvantage. Starting with choice subject to constraints by parents as determining outcomes for children, the paper identifies sequences of interventions to relieve “binding constraints” in the expansion of education. But the fact that parents choose for children is shown to raise a number of questions on normative aspects of inequality measurement. The main conclusions are as follows: (i) A key analytical task is to identify whether education is supply constrained or demand constrained; (ii) The cost-benefit analysis of identifying the “most binding constraint” requires the estimation of an education quality production function; (iii) The recent focus on “quality as opposed to quantity” in education is not self-evidently pro-poor; (iv) The intergenerational links inherent in education between parental choice and children’s outcomes, raise serious conceptual and empirical questions on attempts to separate out inequality of opportunity from inequality of outcomes.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management in its series Working Papers with number 48922.

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Date of creation: Jan 2009
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Handle: RePEc:ags:cudawp:48922

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Related research

Keywords: Intergenerationalities; Health Economics and Policy; International Development; Political Economy; Public Economics;

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  1. Ferreira , Francisco H. G. & Gignoux, Jeremie, 2008. "The measurement of inequality of opportunity : theory and an application to Latin America," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4659, The World Bank.
  2. Deininger, Klaus, 2003. "Does cost of schooling affect enrollment by the poor? Universal primary education in Uganda," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 291-305, June.
  3. François Bourguignon & Francisco Ferreira & Michael Walton, 2007. "Equity, efficiency and inequality traps: A research agenda," Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer, vol. 5(2), pages 235-256, August.
  4. Orazem, Peter & Glewwe, Paul & Patrinos, Harry, 2007. "The Benefits and Costs of Alternative Strategies to Improve Educational Outcomes," Staff General Research Papers 12853, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
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