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The Effects of Redistribution on Occupational Choice and Intergenerational Mobility: Does Wage Equality Nail the Cobbler to His Last?


  • Sjögren, Anna

    () (Dept. of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics)


In this study we extend the classical Roy-model of selection on the labor market by introducing uncertainty about ones ability linked to family background. In our model, this mechanism rather than differences in access to capital markets links occupational outcomes of offspring to parents. Income redistribution is studied and we find that redistribution has implications for intergenerational mobility and talent allocation through its influence on individual occupational choices. We conclude that the presence of a trade-off between redistribution and intergenerational mobility depends on the extent of similarity of occupations with regard to ability sensitivity and wage rates, and on the degree of individual risk aversion. Whether redistribution occurs within an occupation or simultaneously within and across occupations is also important.

Suggested Citation

  • Sjögren, Anna, 1998. "The Effects of Redistribution on Occupational Choice and Intergenerational Mobility: Does Wage Equality Nail the Cobbler to His Last?," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 239, Stockholm School of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:hastef:0239

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Willis, Robert J., 1987. "Wage determinants: A survey and reinterpretation of human capital earnings functions," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & R. Layard (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 10, pages 525-602 Elsevier.
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    4. Checchi, Daniele & Ichino, Andrea & Rustichini, Aldo, 1999. "More equal but less mobile?: Education financing and intergenerational mobility in Italy and in the US," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(3), pages 351-393, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Hassler, John & Mora , José V. Rodríguez, 1998. "IQ, Social Mobility and Growth," Seminar Papers 635, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.

    More about this item


    intergenerational mobility; occupational choice; talent allocation; redistribution;

    JEL classification:

    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion

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