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RED Special Issue on Human Capital and Inequality, an introduction


  • Dean Corbae

    (University of Wisconsin, Madison)

  • Mariacristina De Nardi

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago)

  • Lance Lochner

    (University of Western Ontario)


Since Becker's seminal 1964 book, Human Capital, human capital theory has been used to understand nearly all facets of inequality, including the determinants and evolution of cross-sectional income inequality as well as intergenerational mobility. Individual heterogeneity and market frictions play central roles in this discussion, with many policy analyses motivated by an effort to improve economic efficiency and/or reduce inequality. Economists have also recognized that human capital development begins upon conception and continues throughout the life course, taking place in families, schools, and the workplace. The papers in this special issue, presented at the Human Capital and Economic Opportunity (HCEO) Conference in Chicago, represent work at the frontier of analyses of human capital and inequality, taking on a range of issues that have come to dominate recent discussions in economics. Most of the papers in this issue focus on higher education decisions and post-school lifecycle skill accumulation, considering the implications of important frictions in credit and/or labor markets, but others focus more on earlier investment choices, intergenerational mobility, and the evolution of cross-sectional inequality. (Copyright: Elsevier)

Suggested Citation

  • Dean Corbae & Mariacristina De Nardi & Lance Lochner, 2017. "RED Special Issue on Human Capital and Inequality, an introduction," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 25, pages 1-3, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:issued:17-0
    DOI: 10.1016/

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    Cited by:

    1. Winfried Koeniger & Julien Prat, 2018. "Human Capital and Optimal Redistribution," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 27, pages 1-26, January.

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