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The Intergenerational Transmission of Human Capital: Exploring the Role of Skills and Health Using Data on Adoptees and Twins

  • Lundborg, Petter

    ()

    (Lund University)

  • Nordin, Martin

    ()

    (Lund University)

  • Rooth, Dan-Olof

    ()

    (Stockholm University)

In this paper, we focus on possible causal mechanisms behind the intergenerational transmission of human capital. For this purpose, we use both an adoption and a twin design and study the effect of parents' education on their children's cognitive skills, non-cognitive skills, and health. Our results show that greater parental education increases children's cognitive and non-cognitive skills, as well as their health. These results suggest that the effect of parents' education on children's education may work partly through the positive effect that parental education has on children's skills and health.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6099.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2011
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6099
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  1. Erik Plug & Wim Vijverberg, 2003. "Schooling, Family Background, and Adoption: Is It Nature or Is It Nurture?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(3), pages 611-641, June.
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  3. Sandewall, Örjan & Cesarini, David & Johannesson, Magnus, 2009. "The Co-twin Methodology and Returns to Schooling – Testing a Critical Assumption," Working Paper Series 806, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
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  6. Silke Anger & Guido Heineck, 2009. "Do Smart Parents Raise Smart Children?: The Intergenerational Transmission of Cognitive Abilities," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 156, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  7. Anders Björklund & Mikael Lindahl & Erik Plug, 2006. "The Origins of Intergenerational Associations: Lessons from Swedish Adoption Data," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 121(3), pages 999-1028.
  8. Black, Sandra E. & Devereux, Paul J. & Salvanes, Kjell G., 2008. "Like Father, Like Son? A Note on the Intergenerational Transmission of IQ Scores," IZA Discussion Papers 3651, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Janet Currie & Enrico Moretti, 2005. "Biology as Destiny? Short and Long-Run Determinants of Intergenerational Transmission of Birth Weight," NBER Working Papers 11567, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Grönqvist, Erik & Öckert, Björn & Vlachos, Jonas, 2010. "The intergenerational transmission of cognitive and non-cognitive abilities," CEPR Discussion Papers 7908, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Janet Currie, 2008. "Healthy, Wealthy, and Wise: Socioeconomic Status, Poor Health in Childhood, and Human Capital Development," NBER Working Papers 13987, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Chevalier, Arnaud, 2004. "Parental Education and Child's Education: A Natural Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 1153, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  13. Björklund Anders & Hederos Eriksson Karin & Jäntti Markus, 2010. "IQ and Family Background: Are Associations Strong or Weak?," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 10(1), pages 1-14, January.
  14. Paul J. Devereux & Sandra E. Black & Kjell G. Salvanes, 2005. "Why the apple doesn't fall far : understanding intergenerational transmission of human capital," Open Access publications 10197/309, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
  15. Maarten Lindeboom & Ana Llena Nozal & Bas van der Klaauw, 2006. "Parental Education and Child Health: Evidence from a Schooling Reform," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 06-109/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  16. Hjalmarsson, Randi & Lindquist, Matthew J., 2011. "The Origins of Intergenerational Associations in Crime: Lessons from Swedish Adoption Data," Working Paper Series 11/2011, Swedish Institute for Social Research.
  17. Lucia Breierova & Esther Duflo, 2004. "The Impact of Education on Fertility and Child Mortality: Do Fathers Really Matter Less Than Mothers?," NBER Working Papers 10513, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Yuyu Chen & Hongbin Li, 2006. "Mother's Education and Child Health: Is There a Nurturing Effect?," Discussion Papers 00021, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Department of Economics.
  19. Helena Holmlund & Mikael Lindahl & Erik Plug, 2011. "The Causal Effect of Parents' Schooling on Children's Schooling: A Comparison of Estimation Methods," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 49(3), pages 615-51, September.
  20. Lindqvist, Erik & Westman, Roine, 2009. "The Labor Market Returns to Cognitive and Noncognitive Ability: Evidence from the Swedish Enlistment," Working Paper Series 794, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  21. Erik Plug & Wim Vijverberg, 2005. "Does Family Income Matter for Schooling Outcomes? Using Adoptees as a Natural Experiment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(506), pages 879-906, October.
  22. Björklund, Anders & Salvanes, Kjell G., 2010. "Education and family background: Mechanisms and policies," Discussion Paper Series in Economics 14/2010, Department of Economics, Norwegian School of Economics.
  23. Amin, Vikesh & Lundborg, Petter & Rooth, Dan-Olof, 2011. "Following in Your Father's Footsteps: A Note on the Intergenerational Transmission of Income between Twin Fathers and their Sons," IZA Discussion Papers 5990, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  24. Bruce Sacerdote, 2002. "The Nature and Nurture of Economic Outcomes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 344-348, May.
  25. Shin-Yi Chou & Jin-Tan Liu & Michael Grossman & Ted Joyce, 2010. "Parental Education and Child Health: Evidence from a Natural Experiment in Taiwan," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(1), pages 33-61, January.
  26. Hjalmarsson Randi & Lindquist Matthew J., 2010. "Driving Under the Influence of Our Fathers," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 10(1), pages 1-17, November.
  27. Hjalmarsson, Randi & Lindquist, Matthew, 2009. "Like Godfather, Like Son: Explaining the Intergenerational Nature of Crime," Research Papers in Economics 2009:18, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
  28. Justin McCrary & Heather Royer, 2011. "The Effect of Female Education on Fertility and Infant Health: Evidence from School Entry Policies Using Exact Date of Birth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(1), pages 158-195, February.
  29. Kate L. Antonovics & Arthur S. Goldberger, 2005. "Does Increasing Women's Schooling Raise the Schooling of the Next Generation? Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(5), pages 1738-1744, December.
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