Parental Joblessness and the Moderating Role of a University Degree on the School-to-Work Transition in Australia and the United States

34 Pages Posted: 21 May 2018

See all articles by Matthew Curry

Matthew Curry

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research

Irma Mooi‐Reci

University of Melbourne - School of Social and Political Sciences

Mark Wooden

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Date Written: May 21, 2018

Abstract

Does parental joblessness delay young adults’ school-to-work transitions? If so, can a university degree moderate this relationship? We examine these questions using a representative sample of young adults under the age of 25 that lived with their parents prior to entering the labor market in Australia (N=2,151) and the U.S. (N=811) during the period 2001-2015. Results from Cox proportional hazards models, adjusting for clustering of siblings, demonstrate that parental joblessness is associated with slower school-to-work transitions in both the U.S. and Australia. University degree attainment mitigates much of this negative relationship in Australia, suggesting that parental joblessness is most harmful for Australians who leave school before earning a university degree. There is no evidence for a similar interaction in the U.S., suggesting that the relationship between education, parental joblessness, and the school-to-work transition may depend on contextual factors such as the welfare regime.

Keywords: employment, education, generations, social mobility

JEL Classification: I24, J62

Suggested Citation

Curry, Matthew and Mooi‐Reci, Irma and Wooden, Mark, Parental Joblessness and the Moderating Role of a University Degree on the School-to-Work Transition in Australia and the United States (May 21, 2018). Melbourne Institute Working Paper No. 6/18. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3182194 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3182194

Matthew Curry (Contact Author)

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research ( email )

Level 5, FBE Building, 111 Barry Street
Parkville, Victoria 3010
Australia

Irma Mooi‐Reci

University of Melbourne - School of Social and Political Sciences

Level 4, John Medley Building
Melbourne, VIC 3010
Australia

Mark Wooden

University of Melbourne - Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research ( email )

Level 5, FBE Building, 111 Barry Street
Parkville, Victoria 3010
Australia

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

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