The Role of School and Neighborhood Context in Patterns of Intergenerational Mobility

Karen Gerken, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

This paper aims to provide more recent estimates of the extent to which parental social class affects their children’s social status using the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. I also expand on current human capital explanations of the intergenerational transmission of social class with factors previously not examined, such as the presence of a mentor, community involvement and social networks in adolescence. I also investigate how neighborhood and school contexts interact with individual characteristics at a crucial point in the life course to influence later life outcomes, controlling for selection effects with unique data on parental reasoning for choosing schools and neighborhoods.

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Presented in Session 205: Intra- and Intergenerational Mobility in the U.S. and U.K.