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

42 Pages Posted: 4 Sep 2015

See all articles by Petter Lundborg

Petter Lundborg

Lund University School of Economics and Management; Tinbergen Institute; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Kaveh Majlesi

Lund University; Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

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.

Keywords: human capital, mortality, education

JEL Classification: I10, 126

Suggested Citation

Lundborg, Petter and Majlesi, Kaveh, Intergenerational Transmission of Human Capital: Is it a One-Way Street?. IZA Discussion Paper No. 9280, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2655320

Petter Lundborg (Contact Author)

Lund University School of Economics and Management ( email )

P.O Box 7080
Lund
Sweden

Tinbergen Institute ( email )

Burg. Oudlaan 50
Rotterdam, 3062 PA
Netherlands

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Kaveh Majlesi

Lund University ( email )

Box 117
Lund, SC Skane S221 00
Sweden

Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN) ( email )

Box 55665
Grevgatan 34, 2nd floor
Stockholm, SE-102 15
Sweden

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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