The Nature and Nurture of Economic Outcomes
This paper uses data on adopted children to examine the relative importance of biology and environment in determining educational and labor market outcomes. I employ three long-term panel data sets which contain information on adopted children, their adoptive parents, and their biological parents. In at least two of the three data sets, the mechanism for assigning children to adoptive parents is fairly random and does not match children to adoptive parents based on health, race, or ability. I find that adoptive parents' education and income have a modest impact on child test scores but a large impact on college attendance, marital status, and earnings. In contrast with existing work on IQ scores, I do not find that the influence of adoptive parents declines with child age.
|Date of creation:||Oct 2000|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published as Sacerdote, Bruce. "The Nature and Nurture of Economic Outcomes." American Economic Review 92, 2 (May 2002): 344-48.|
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- Bruce Sacerdote, 2002.
"The Nature and Nurture of Economic Outcomes,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 344-348, May.
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NBER Working Papers
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"Income, Schooling, And Ability: Evidence From A New Sample Of Identical Twins,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
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"Schooling, Family Background, and Adoption: Is It Nature of Is It Nurture?,"
736, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
- 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.
- Plug, Erik & Vijverberg, Wim P., 2001. "Schooling, Family Background, and Adoption: Is it Nature or is it Nurture?," IZA Discussion Papers 247, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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