IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/oup/restud/v69y2002i1p191-208.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

On the Evaluation of Economic Mobility

Author

Listed:
  • Peter Gottschalk
  • Enrico Spolaore

Abstract

This paper presents a framework for the evaluation and measurement of “reversal” and “origin independence” as separate aspects of economic mobility. We show that evaluation depends on aversion to multi-period inequality, aversion to inter-temporal fluctuations, and aversion to future risk. We construct “extended Atkinson indices” that allow us to quantify the relative impact of reversal and origin independence on welfare. We apply our approach to the comparison of income mobility in Germany and in the U.S.. When aversion to inequality is the only consideration, the U.S. gains more from mobility than Germany. This reflects similar gains from reversal in the two countries but greater gains in the U.S. from origin independence. The introduction of aversion to intertemporal fluctuations and aversion to future risk makes the impact of mobility in the two countries more similar. Copyright 2002, Wiley-Blackwell.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter Gottschalk & Enrico Spolaore, 2002. "On the Evaluation of Economic Mobility," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(1), pages 191-208.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:restud:v:69:y:2002:i:1:p:191-208
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/1467-937X.00203
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Kevin W. S. Roberts, 1980. "Interpersonal Comparability and Social Choice Theory," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 47(2), pages 421-439.
    2. Judd, Kenneth L., 1985. "The law of large numbers with a continuum of IID random variables," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 19-25, February.
    3. Galor, Oded & Tsiddon, Daniel, 1997. "Technological Progress, Mobility, and Economic Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(3), pages 363-382, June.
    4. Peter A. Diamond, 1967. "Cardinal Welfare, Individualistic Ethics, and Interpersonal Comparison of Utility: Comment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75, pages 765-765.
    5. John Fitzgerald & Peter Gottschalk & Robert Moffitt, 1998. "An Analysis of Sample Attrition in Panel Data: The Michigan Panel Study of Income Dynamics," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(2), pages 251-299.
    6. Alesina, Alberto & Di Tella, Rafael & MacCulloch, Robert, 2004. "Inequality and happiness: are Europeans and Americans different?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(9-10), pages 2009-2042, August.
    7. Roland Benabou & Efe A. Ok, 2000. "Mobility as Progressivity: Ranking Income Processes According to Equality of Opportunity," Working Papers 150, Princeton University, School of Public and International Affairs, Discussion Papers in Economics.
    8. Philippe Weil, 1990. "Nonexpected Utility in Macroeconomics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(1), pages 29-42.
    9. Kevin M. Murphy & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1991. "The Allocation of Talent: Implications for Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(2), pages 503-530.
    10. Rolf Aaberge & Anders Björklund & Markus Jäntti & Mårten Palme & Peder J. Pedersen & Nina Smith & Tom Wennemo, 2002. "Income Inequality and Income Mobility in the Scandinavian Countries Compared to the United States," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 48(4), pages 443-469, December.
    11. Dardanoni Valentino, 1993. "Measuring Social Mobility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 61(2), pages 372-394, December.
    12. Anders Björklund & Markus Jäntti, 2000. "Intergenerational mobility of socio-economic status in comparative perspective," Nordic Journal of Political Economy, Nordic Journal of Political Economy, vol. 26, pages 3-32.
    13. Larry G. Epstein & Stanley E. Zin, 2013. "Substitution, risk aversion and the temporal behavior of consumption and asset returns: A theoretical framework," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Leonard C MacLean & William T Ziemba (ed.), HANDBOOK OF THE FUNDAMENTALS OF FINANCIAL DECISION MAKING Part I, chapter 12, pages 207-239, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    14. Lars Peter Hansen & Thomas J Sargent, 2014. "Robust Permanent Income and Pricing," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: UNCERTAINTY WITHIN ECONOMIC MODELS, chapter 3, pages 33-81, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    15. Kreps, David M & Porteus, Evan L, 1979. "Dynamic Choice Theory and Dynamic Programming," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 91-100, January.
    16. Peter Gottschalk & Timothy M. Smeeding, 1997. "Cross-National Comparisons of Earnings and Income Inequality," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(2), pages 633-687, June.
    17. Mervyn A. King, 1980. "An Index of Inequality: With Applications to Horizontal Equity and Social Mobility," NBER Working Papers 0468, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Markandya, Anil, 1982. "Intergenerational exchange mobility and economic welfare," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 307-324.
    19. Christopher J. Flinn, 2002. "Labour Market Structure and Inequality: A Comparison of Italy and the U.S," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(3), pages 611-645.
    20. Fields, Gary S. & Ok, Efe A., 1996. "The Meaning and Measurement of Income Mobility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 349-377, November.
    21. John C. Harsanyi, 1955. "Cardinal Welfare, Individualistic Ethics, and Interpersonal Comparisons of Utility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 63, pages 309-309.
    22. Shorrocks, Anthony, 1978. "Income inequality and income mobility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 376-393, December.
    23. David M. Kreps & Evan L. Porteus, 2013. "Temporal von Neumann—Morgenstern and Induced Preferences," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Leonard C MacLean & William T Ziemba (ed.), HANDBOOK OF THE FUNDAMENTALS OF FINANCIAL DECISION MAKING Part I, chapter 11, pages 181-206, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    24. King, Mervyn A, 1983. "An Index of Inequality: With Applications to Horizontal Equity and Social Mobility," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(1), pages 99-115, January.
    25. A. B. Atkinson & F. Bourguignon, 1982. "The Comparison of Multi-Dimensioned Distributions of Economic Status," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 49(2), pages 183-201.
    26. Chakravarty, S. R., 1984. "Normative indices for measuring social mobility," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 15(1-2), pages 175-180.
    27. Epstein, Larry G & Wang, Tan, 1994. "Intertemporal Asset Pricing Under Knightian Uncertainty," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(2), pages 283-322, March.
    28. Kreps, David M & Porteus, Evan L, 1978. "Temporal Resolution of Uncertainty and Dynamic Choice Theory," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(1), pages 185-200, January.
    29. Shorrocks, A F, 1978. "The Measurement of Mobility," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(5), pages 1013-1024, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Jantti, Markus & Jenkins, Stephen P., 2013. "Income mobility," ISER Working Paper Series 2013-23, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
    2. Joachim Jarreau, 2015. "The Impact of Naturalizations on Job Mobility and Wages: Evidence from France," Working Papers halshs-01117449, HAL.
    3. Luis Ayala & Mercedes Sastre, 2004. "Europe vs. the United States: is there a trade-off between mobility and inequality?," Journal of Income Distribution, Ad libros publications inc., vol. 13(1-2), pages 4-4, March-Jun.
    4. C. Schluter & D. Van De Gaer, 2003. "Mobility as distributional difference," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 03/182, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
    5. Kai-yuen Tsui, 2009. "Measurement of income mobility: a re-examination," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 33(4), pages 629-645, November.
    6. Piacquadio, Paolo G., 2020. "The ethics of intergenerational risk," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 186(C).
    7. John Creedy & Elin Halvorsen & Thor O. Thoresen, 2013. "Inequality Comparisons In A Multi-Period Framework: The Role Of Alternative Welfare Metrics," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 59(2), pages 235-249, June.
    8. Satya R. Chakravarty & Nachiketa Chattopadhyay & Nora Lustig & Rodrigo Aranda, 2020. "Measuring Directional Mobility: The Bartholomew and Prais-Bibby Indices Reconsidered," Research on Economic Inequality, in: Juan Gabriel Rodríguez & John A. Bishop (ed.), Inequality, Redistribution and Mobility, volume 28, pages 75-96, Emerald Publishing Ltd.
    9. Stephen P. Jenkins & Philippe Van Kerm, 2006. "Trends in income inequality, pro-poor income growth, and income mobility," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(3), pages 531-548, July.
    10. Alesina, Alberto & La Ferrara, Eliana, 2005. "Preferences for redistribution in the land of opportunities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(5-6), pages 897-931, June.
    11. Kihlstrom, Richard, 2009. "Risk aversion and the elasticity of substitution in general dynamic portfolio theory: Consistent planning by forward looking, expected utility maximizing investors," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(9-10), pages 634-663, September.
    12. Ruiz-Castillo, Javier, 1997. "Income mobility, permutations, and rerankings," UC3M Working papers. Economics 6070, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía.
    13. Loïc Berger & Johannes Emmerling, 2020. "Welfare As Equity Equivalents," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 34(4), pages 727-752, September.
    14. Antonio Abatemarco, 2017. "Evaluating Economic Mobility under Opportunity Egalitarianism," International Journal of Economics and Finance, Canadian Center of Science and Education, vol. 9(12), pages 260-277, December.
    15. Javier Ruiz-Castillo, 2004. "The measurement of structural and exchange income mobility," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 2(3), pages 219-228, September.
    16. Peress, Joel, 2010. "The tradeoff between risk sharing and information production in financial markets," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 145(1), pages 124-155, January.
    17. Van Kerm, Philippe, 2003. "What Lies Behind Income Mobility? Reranking and Distributional Change in Belgium, Western Germany and the USA," IRISS Working Paper Series 2003-03, IRISS at CEPS/INSTEAD.
    18. Krebs, Tom & Krishna, Pravin & Maloney, William F., 2013. "Income Mobility and Welfare," Working Papers 13-02, University of Mannheim, Department of Economics.
    19. Alberto Giovannini & Philippe Weil, 1989. "Risk Aversion and Intertemporal Substitution in the Capital Asset Pricing Model," NBER Working Papers 2824, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    20. Rolf Aaberge & Magne Mogstad, 2009. "On the Measurement of Long-Term Income Inequality and Income Mobility," ICER Working Papers 09-2009, ICER - International Centre for Economic Research.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • J60 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - General
    • J69 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Other

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oup:restud:v:69:y:2002:i:1:p:191-208. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Oxford University Press or Christopher F. Baum (email available below). General contact details of provider: .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.