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Parental Investment in Childhood and Later Adult Well-Being: Can More Involved Parents Offset the Effects of Socioeconomic Disadvantage?

Author

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  • Darcy Hango

Abstract

Parental involvement in their children's lives can have a lasting impact on well-being. More involved parents convey to their children that they are interested in their development, and this in turn signals to the child that their future is valued. However, what happens in socio-economically disadvantaged homes? Can the social capital produced by greater parental involvement counteract some of the harmful effects of less financial capital? These questions are examined on the National Child Development Study; a longitudinal study of children born in Britain in 1958. Results on a sample of children raised in two parent families suggest that parental involvement does matter, but that it depends on when it and poverty are measured, as well as the type of involvement and the gender of the parent. Father interest in education has the strongest impact on earlier poverty, especially at age 11. Meanwhile, both father and mother interest in school at age 16 have the largest direct impact on education. The frequency of outings with mother at age 11 also has a larger direct impact on education than outings with father, however, neither compare with the reduction in the poverty effect as a result of father interest in school.

Suggested Citation

  • Darcy Hango, 2005. "Parental Investment in Childhood and Later Adult Well-Being: Can More Involved Parents Offset the Effects of Socioeconomic Disadvantage?," CASE Papers 098, Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:sticas:098
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    File URL: http://sticerd.lse.ac.uk/dps/case/cp/CASEpaper98.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. De Civita, Mirella & Pagani, Linda & Vitaro, Frank & Tremblay, Richard E., 2004. "The role of maternal educational aspirations in mediating the risk of income source on academic failure in children from persistently poor families," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 26(8), pages 749-769, August.
    2. Harper, Caroline & Marcus, Rachel & Moore, Karen, 2003. "Enduring Poverty and the Conditions of Childhood: Lifecourse and Intergenerational Poverty Transmissions," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 535-554, March.
    3. McNealJr., Ralph B., 2001. "Differential effects of parental involvement on cognitive and behavioral outcomes by socioeconomic status," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 171-179, March.
    4. Shana Pribesh & Douglas Downey, 1999. "Why are residential and school moves associated with poor school performance?," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 36(4), pages 521-534, November.
    5. Sacker, Amanda & Schoon, Ingrid & Bartley, Mel, 2002. "Social inequality in educational achievement and psychosocial adjustment throughout childhood: magnitude and mechanisms," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 55(5), pages 863-880, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Anna Christina D'Addio, 2007. "Intergenerational Transmission of Disadvantage: Mobility or Immobility Across Generations?," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 52, OECD Publishing.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    parental involvement; socioeconomic disadvantage; social capital; education; National Child Development Study;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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