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Intergenerational Transmission of Human Capital: Is It a One-Way Street?

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Studies on the intergenerational transmission of human capital usually assume a one-way spillover from parents to children. But what if children also affect their parents’ human capital? Using exogenous variation in education, arising from a Swedish compulsory schooling reform in the 1950s and 1960s, we address this question by studying the causal effect of children’s schooling on their parents’ longevity. We first replicate previous findings of a positive and significant cross-sectional relationship between children’s education and their parents’ longevity. Our causal estimates tell a different story; children’s schooling has no significant effect on parents’ survival. These results hold when we examine separate causes of death and when we restrict the sample to low-income and low-educated parents.

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  • Lundborg, Petter & Majlesi, Kaveh, 2015. "Intergenerational Transmission of Human Capital: Is It a One-Way Street?," Working Papers 2015:22, Lund University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:lunewp:2015_022
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    Cited by:

    1. Everding, Jakob, 2019. "Heterogeneous spillover effects of children's education on parental mental health," hche Research Papers 2019/18, University of Hamburg, Hamburg Center for Health Economics (hche).
    2. De Neve, Jan-Walter & Kawachi, Ichiro, 2017. "Spillovers between siblings and from offspring to parents are understudied: A review and future directions for research," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 183(C), pages 56-61.
    3. Martin Fischer & Ulf-Göram Gerdtham, & Gawain Heckley & Martin Karlsson & Gustav Kjellsson & Therese Nilsson, 2019. "Education and Health: Long-run Effects of Peers, Tracking and Years," CINCH Working Paper Series 1906, Universitaet Duisburg-Essen, Competent in Competition and Health.
    4. Yahirun, Jenjira J. & Sheehan, Connor M. & Hayward, Mark D., 2017. "Adult children's education and changes to parents' physical health in Mexico," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 181(C), pages 93-101.
    5. Holmlund, Helena, 2020. "A researcher’s guide to the Swedish compulsory school reform," Working Paper Series 2020:15, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    6. Adermon, Adrian & Lindahl, Mikael & Palme, Mårten, 2016. "Dynastic human capital, inequality and intergenerational mobility," Working Paper Series 2016:19, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    7. Ma, Mingming, 2019. "Does children's education matter for parents’ health and cognition? Evidence from China," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 222-240.
    8. Knüpfer, Samuli & Rantapuska, Elias & Sarvimäki, Matti, 2017. "Why does portfolio choice correlate across generations," Research Discussion Papers 25/2017, Bank of Finland.
    9. Yiqun Chen & Petra Persson & Maria Polyakova, 2019. "The Roots of Health Inequality and The Value of Intra-Family Expertise," NBER Working Papers 25618, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Nan Jiang, 2019. "Adult Children’s Education and Later-Life Health of Parents in China: The Intergenerational Effects of Human Capital Investment," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 145(1), pages 257-278, August.
    11. De Neve, Jan-Walter & Harling, Guy, 2017. "Offspring schooling associated with increased parental survival in rural KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 176(C), pages 149-157.
    12. Jiang, Nan & Kaushal, Neeraj, 2020. "How children's education affects caregiving: Evidence from parent’s last years of life," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 38(C).
    13. Artmann, Elisabeth & Oosterbeek, Hessel & van der Klaauw, Bas, 2019. "Do doctors improve the health care of their parents? Evidence from admission lotteries," CEPR Discussion Papers 14061, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Intergenerational transmission; Human capital; Longevity; Compulsory schooling; Education;

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I26 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Returns to Education
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination

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