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Racial Identity and Education

Author

Listed:
  • Patacchini, Eleonora

    (Cornell University)

  • Zenou, Yves

    (Monash University)

Abstract

We investigate the sources of differences in school performance between students of different races by focusing on identity issues. We find that having a higher percentage of same-race friends has a positive effect of white teenagers' test score while having a negative effect on blacks' test scores. However, the higher the education level of a black teenager's parent, the lower this negative effect, while for whites, it is the reverse. It is thus the combination of the choice of friends (which is a measure of own identity) and the parent’s education that are responsible for the difference in education attainment between students of different races but also between students of the same race. One interesting aspects of this paper is to provide a theoretical model that grounds the instrumental variable approach used in the empirical analysis to deal with endogeneity issues.

Suggested Citation

  • Patacchini, Eleonora & Zenou, Yves, 2006. "Racial Identity and Education," IZA Discussion Papers 2046, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2046
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Card, David & Rothstein, Jesse, 2007. "Racial segregation and the black-white test score gap," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(11-12), pages 2158-2184, December.
    2. Harminder Battu & McDonald Mwale & Yves Zenou, 2007. "Oppositional identities and the labor market," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 20(3), pages 643-667, July.
    3. Xin Meng & Robert G. Gregory, 2005. "Intermarriage and the Economic Assimilation of Immigrants," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(1), pages 135-176, January.
    4. Neal, Derek, 2006. "Why Has Black-White Skill Convergence Stopped?," Handbook of the Economics of Education, in: Erik Hanushek & F. Welch (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Education, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 9, pages 511-576, Elsevier.
    5. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics and Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753.
    6. George J. Borjas, 1992. "Ethnic Capital and Intergenerational Mobility," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(1), pages 123-150.
    7. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2002. "Identity and Schooling: Some Lessons for the Economics of Education," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(4), pages 1167-1201, December.
    8. David M. Cutler & Edward L. Glaeser & Jacob L. Vigdor, 1999. "The Rise and Decline of the American Ghetto," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(3), pages 455-506, June.
    9. Selod, Harris & Zenou, Yves, 2003. "Does City Structure Affect the Labor Market Outcomes of Black Workers?," IZA Discussion Papers 928, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    10. Caroline Hoxby, 2000. "Peer Effects in the Classroom: Learning from Gender and Race Variation," NBER Working Papers 7867, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Alberto Bisin & Eleonora Patacchini & Thierry Verdier & Yves Zenou, 2011. "Ethnic identity and labour market outcomes of immigrants in Europe [Assessing the oppositional culture explanation for racial/ethnic differences in school performance]," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 26(65), pages 57-92.
    2. Nekby, Lena & Rödin, Magnus, 2007. "Acculturation Identity and Labor Market Outcomes," IZA Discussion Papers 2826, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    3. Harminder Battu & Yves Zenou, 2010. "Oppositional Identities and Employment for Ethnic Minorities: Evidence from England," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(542), pages 52-71, February.
    4. De Martí, Joan & Zenou, Yves, 2009. "Ethnic Identity and Social Distance in Friendship Formation," CEPR Discussion Papers 7566, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Nekby, Lena & Rödin, Magnus & Özcan, Gülay, 2007. "Acculturation Identity and Educational Attainment," SULCIS Working Papers 2007:6, Stockholm University, Linnaeus Center for Integration Studies - SULCIS.
    6. Marco Tonello, 2011. "Mechanisms of peer interactions between native and non-native students: rejection or integration?," Working Papers 2011/21, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
    7. Giovanni Facchini & Eleonora Patacchini & Max F. Steinhardt, 2015. "Migration, Friendship Ties, and Cultural Assimilation," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 117(2), pages 619-649, April.
    8. Giuseppina Autiero, 2017. "Ethnic identity and scholastic effort: a multifaceted approach," IZA Journal of Migration and Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 7(1), pages 1-13, December.
    9. Nekby, Lena & Rödin, Magnus, 2010. "Acculturation identity and employment among second and middle generation immigrants," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 35-50, February.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    education achievement; peer effects; ethnic minorities; endogeneity issues;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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