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Surnames and social status in Spain

Author

Listed:
  • M. Dolores Collado

    (Universidad de Alicante)

  • Ignacio Ortuño Ortín

    (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid and IVIE)

  • Andrés Romeu

    (Universidad de Murcia)

Abstract

We study the information contained in surnames on the socioeconomic status of people in Spain. We find that people bearing uncommon surnames tend to enjoy a higher socioeconomic status than people bearing more common surnames. This bias is statistically very significant and robust to different measures of socioeconomic status, and it holds at the national aggregate level as well as at the regional level. The paper offers an explanation of a significant part of such bias as being generated by a signaling behavior by successful dynasties and a low degree of social mobility.

Suggested Citation

  • M. Dolores Collado & Ignacio Ortuño Ortín & Andrés Romeu, 2008. "Surnames and social status in Spain," Investigaciones Economicas, Fundación SEPI, vol. 32(3), pages 259-287, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:iec:inveco:v:32:y:2008:i:3:p:259-287
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    File URL: ftp://ftp.fundacionsepi.es/InvEcon/paperArchive/sep2008/v32i3a1.pdf
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Jurajda, Stepán & Münich, Daniel, 2010. "Admission to selective schools, alphabetically," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 29(6), pages 1100-1109, December.
    2. Romeu, Andrés & Collado, M. Dolores & Ortuño Ortin, Ignacio, 2013. "Long-run intergenerational social mobility and the distribution of surnames," UMUFAE Economics Working Papers 36768, DIGITUM. Universidad de Murcia.
    3. Clark, Gregory & Cummins, Neil & Hao, Yu & Vidal, Dan Diaz, 2015. "Surnames: A new source for the history of social mobility," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 3-24.
    4. Jose A. Martinez, 2013. "Do names matter? The influence of names on perception about professionals in Spain," Economics and Business Letters, Oviedo University Press, vol. 2(2), pages 66-74.
    5. Stepan Jurajda & Daniel Munich, 2014. "Alphabetical Order Effects in School Admissions," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp509, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
    6. Collado, M. Dolores & Ortuño-Ortín, Ignacio & Romeu, Andrés, 2012. "Intergenerational linkages in consumption patterns and the geographical distribution of surnames," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1-2), pages 341-350.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Surnames; socioeconomic status.;

    JEL classification:

    • J70 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - General
    • J00 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - General

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