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The evolution of social mobility: Norway over the 20th century

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  • Sarvimäki, Matti
  • Pekkarinen, Tuomas
  • Salvanes, Kjell G.

Abstract

This paper documents trends in social mobility in Norway starting from fathers born at the turn of the 20th century and ending with sons born in the 1970s. We measure social mobility with intergenerational income elasticities, associations between fathers' and sons' income percentiles, and brother correlations. All approaches suggest that social mobility increased substantially between cohorts born in the early 1930s and the early 1940s. Father-son associations remained stable for cohorts born after WWII, while brother correlations continued to decline. The relationship between fathers' and sons' income percentile ranks is highly nonlinear for the early cohorts, but approaches linearity over time. We discuss increasing educational attainment among low- and middle-income families as a possible mechanism behind these trends.

Suggested Citation

  • Sarvimäki, Matti & Pekkarinen, Tuomas & Salvanes, Kjell G., 2016. "The evolution of social mobility: Norway over the 20th century," Working Papers 76, VATT Institute for Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:fer:wpaper:76
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    Cited by:

    1. Chi, Chang Koo & Murto, Pauli & Valimaki, Juuso, 2017. "All-Pay Auctions with Affiliated Values," MPRA Paper 80799, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Bütikofer, Aline & Mølland, Eirin & Salvanes, Kjell G., 2018. "Childhood nutrition and labor market outcomes: Evidence from a school breakfast program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 168(C), pages 62-80.
    3. Folgerø, Ingrid Kristine & Harding, Torfinn & Westby, Benjamin, 2017. "Going Fast or Going Green? Evidence from Environmental Speed Limits in Norway," Discussion Paper Series in Economics 12/2017, Norwegian School of Economics, Department of Economics.
    4. Jørgen Modalsli, 2023. "Multigenerational Persistence: Evidence from 146 Years of Administrative Data," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 58(3), pages 929-961.
    5. Bott, Kristina Maria & Cappelen, Alexander W. & Sørensen, Erik Ø. & Tungodden, Bertil, 2017. "You’ve got mail: A randomised Field experiment on tax evasion," Discussion Paper Series in Economics 10/2017, Norwegian School of Economics, Department of Economics.
    6. Attanasio, Orazio & Kovacs, Agnes & Molnar, Krisztina, 2017. "Euler Equations, Subjective Expectations and Income Shocks," Discussion Paper Series in Economics 5/2017, Norwegian School of Economics, Department of Economics.
    7. Driouchi, Ahmed & Gamar, Alae, 2016. "The Gap between Educational & Social Intergenerational Mobility in Arab Countries," MPRA Paper 73998, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    intergenerational mobility; education; sibling correlation; Income distribution; Tulonjako; Labour market; Työmarkkinat; I240 - Education and Inequality; J080 - Labor Economics Policies;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I24 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Inequality
    • J08 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics Policies

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