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Gender and Intergenerational Mobility: Using Health Outcomes to Compare Intergenerational Mobility Across Gender and Over Time

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  • John Parman

    () (Department of Economics, College of William and Mary)

Abstract

Changes in intergenerational mobility over time have been the focus of extensive research. However, existing studies have been limited to studying only males and relying on intergenerational correlations in outcome variables that often lack clear welfare implications. This paper introduces a new methodology for measuring intergenerational mobility that relies on health measures rather than occupational measures to assess the strength of the relationship between the outcomes of parents and their children. It introduces a new intergenerational dataset spanning seven decades that is constructed by linking individuals' death certificates to those of their parents. Relying on death certificates data allows for linking both males and females to their parents. Life span calculated from these death certificates provides a measure of welfare that has a consistent interpretation across time and genders. Intergenerational correlations in life span serve as our measure of mobility. We find that a son's life span is strongly correlated with his father's and that this correlation has strengthened over time. Daughter's life span shows a similarly strong relationship with mother's life span that has remained relatively stable over the past century. Differences in life span are shown to correlate with occupational status and occupational transitions from one generation to the next.

Suggested Citation

  • John Parman, "undated". "Gender and Intergenerational Mobility: Using Health Outcomes to Compare Intergenerational Mobility Across Gender and Over Time," Working Papers 122, Department of Economics, College of William and Mary.
  • Handle: RePEc:cwm:wpaper:122
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    File URL: http://economics.wm.edu/wp/cwm_wp122.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Solon, Gary, 1999. "Intergenerational mobility in the labor market," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 29, pages 1761-1800 Elsevier.
    4. Bhashkar Mazumder, 2005. "Fortunate Sons: New Estimates of Intergenerational Mobility in the United States Using Social Security Earnings Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 87(2), pages 235-255, May.
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    6. Jason Long & Joseph Ferrie, 2007. "The Path to Convergence: Intergenerational Occupational Mobility in Britain and the US in Three Eras," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(519), pages 61-71, March.
    7. Irma Elo & Samuel Preston, 1994. "Estimating African-American mortality from inaccurate data," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 31(3), pages 427-458, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Cook, Lisa D. & Logan, Trevon D. & Parman, John M., 2014. "Distinctively black names in the American past," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 64-82.
    2. Piraino, Patrizio & Muller, Sean & Cilliers, Jeanne & Fourie, Johan, 2013. "The transmission of longevity across generations: The case of the settler Cape Colony," SALDRU Working Papers 113, Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit, University of Cape Town.
    3. Jean-Francois Maystadt & Giuseppe Migali, 2017. "The transmission of health across 7 generations in China, 1789-1906," Working Papers 147116320, Lancaster University Management School, Economics Department.

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