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Inequality and teenagers’ educational aspirations in urban Mexico


  • Aniel Altamirano

    () (LAC-UNDP)

  • Luis Felipe López-Calva

    () (Regional Bureau for Latin America and the Caribbean-UNDP)

  • Isidro Soloaga

    () (El Colegio de México)


The goal of this paper is to assess in which way socioeconomic and other family characteristics affect youth’s aspirations for education in urban Mexico. The theoretical approach, grounded in Sen´s capabilities approach, incorporates recent developments in two strands of the literature: a) one that assesses the impact of economic mobility on individuals´ aspirations and on the impact of aspirations on individuals behavior; and b) one that stresses the importance of agency, both, as a goal itself for human development and because its instrumental value for people to achieve whatever goals or values they regard as important. What follows presents the theoretical approach and an empirical application to Mexico DF. The paper elaborates on the plausible impact of the findings for the intergenerational transmission of inequality in LAC countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Aniel Altamirano & Luis Felipe López-Calva & Isidro Soloaga, 2010. "Inequality and teenagers’ educational aspirations in urban Mexico," Serie documentos de trabajo del Centro de Estudios Económicos 2010-07, El Colegio de México, Centro de Estudios Económicos.
  • Handle: RePEc:emx:ceedoc:2010-07

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    inequality; education; economic mobility;

    JEL classification:

    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • H52 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Education
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I22 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Educational Finance; Financial Aid

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