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Dads and Daughters: The Changing Impact of Fathers on Women’s Occupational Choices

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  • Judith K. Hellerstein
  • Melinda Sandler Morrill

Abstract

We examine whether women’s rising labor force participation led to increased intergenerational transmission of occupation from fathers to daughters. We develop a model where fathers invest in human capital that is specific to their own occupations. Our model generates an empirical test where we compare the trends in the probabilities that women work in their father’s versus their father-in-law’s occupation. Using data from birth cohorts born between 1909 and 1977, our results indicate that the estimated difference in these trends accounts for at least 13–20 percent of the total increase in the probability that a woman enters her father’s occupation.

Suggested Citation

  • Judith K. Hellerstein & Melinda Sandler Morrill, 2011. "Dads and Daughters: The Changing Impact of Fathers on Women’s Occupational Choices," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 46(2), pages 333-372.
  • Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:46:y:2011:ii:1:p:333-372
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. David Lam & Robert F. Schoeni, 1994. "Family Ties and Labor Markets in the United States and Brazil," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 29(4), pages 1235-1258.
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    7. Daron Acemoglu & David H. Autor & David Lyle, 2004. "Women, War, and Wages: The Effect of Female Labor Supply on the Wage Structure at Midcentury," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(3), pages 497-551, June.
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    10. Joseph P. Ferrie, 2005. "History Lessons: The End of American Exceptionalism? Mobility in the United States Since 1850," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(3), pages 199-215, Summer.
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    Cited by:

    1. Raven E. Saks & Abigail Wozniak, 2011. "Labor Reallocation over the Business Cycle: New Evidence from Internal Migration," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 29(4), pages 697-739.
    2. Carmen Aina & Cheti Nicoletti, 2014. "The intergenerational transmission of liberal professions: nepotism versus abilities," Discussion Papers 14/14, Department of Economics, University of York.
    3. Martha Stinson & Christopher Wignall, 2018. "Fathers, Children, and the Intergenerational Transmission of Employers," Working Papers 18-12, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    4. Morrill, Melinda Sandler & Morrill, Thayer, 2013. "Intergenerational links in female labor force participation," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(C), pages 38-47.
    5. Xia, Xiaoyu, 2016. "Forming wage expectations through learning: Evidence from college major choices," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 132(PA), pages 176-196.
    6. Venke Furre Haaland & Mari Rege & Kjetil Telle & Mark Votruba, 2014. "The intergenerational transfer of the employment gender gap," Discussion Papers 767, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
    7. Stefania Marcassa, 2014. "Unemployment Duration of Spouses: Evidence From France," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 28(4), pages 399-429, December.
    8. Azam, Mehtabul, 2013. "Intergenerational Occupational Mobility in India," IZA Discussion Papers 7608, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. Olivetti, Claudia & Paserman, M. Daniele, 2013. "In the Name of the Son (and the Daughter): Intergenerational Mobility in the United States, 1850-1930," CEPR Discussion Papers 9372, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    10. Carro, Jesús M. & Machado, Matilde P. & Mora, Ricardo, 2014. "Transmission of preferences and beliefs about female labor market participation : direct evidence on the role of mothers," UC3M Working papers. Economics we1421, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía.
    11. Veronika V. Eberharter, 2013. "The Intergenerational Dynamics of Social Inequality: Empirical Evidence from Europe and the United States," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 588, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    12. Venke Furre Haaland & Mari Rege & Kjetil Telle & Mark Votruba, 2013. "The Intergenerational Transfer of the Gender Gap in Labor Force Participation," CESifo Working Paper Series 4489, CESifo Group Munich.
    13. Veronika V. Eberharter, 2012. "The Intergenerational Transmission of Occupational Preferences, Segregation, and Wage Inequality: Empirical Evidence from Three Countries," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 506, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    14. Rao, Neel, 2016. "Social effects in employer learning: An analysis of siblings," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 24-36.
    15. Jerry A. Jacobs & Seher Ahmad & Linda J. Sax, 2017. "Planning a Career in Engineering: Parental Effects on Sons and Daughters," Social Sciences, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 6(1), pages 1-25, January.
    16. repec:eee:inecon:v:109:y:2017:i:c:p:138-152 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Aina, Carmen & Nicoletti, Cheti, 2014. "The intergenerational mobility of liberal professions: nepotism versus abilities," ISER Working Paper Series 2014-39, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
    18. Schwenkenberg, Julia M., 2014. "Occupations and the evolution of gender differences in intergenerational socioeconomic mobility," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 124(3), pages 348-352.

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