Education Transmission and Network Formation

49 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2021

See all articles by Vincent Boucher

Vincent Boucher

Université Laval

Carlo L. Del Bello

Paris School of Economics (PSE)

Fabrizio Panebianco

Catholic University of Milan

Thierry Verdier

Paris School of Economics (PSE); Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio) - Department of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Yves Zenou

Stockholm University; Monash University - Department of Economics; Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IUI); IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Multiple version iconThere are 3 versions of this paper

Date Written: October 20, 2021

Abstract

We propose a model of intergenerational transmission of education wherein children belong to either highly educated or low-educated families. Children choose the intensity of their social activities while parents decide how much educational effort to exert. Using data on adolescents in the United States, we structurally estimate this model and find that, on average, children’s homophily acts as a complement to the educational effort of highly educated parents but as a substitute for the educational effort of low-educated parents. We also perform some counterfactual policy simulations. We find that policies that subsidize kids’ socialization efforts can backfire for low-educated students because they tend to increase their interactions with other low-educated students (i.e., homophily), which reduces the education effort of their parents and, thus, their chance of becoming educated. On the contrary, policies that increase heterophily by favoring friendship links between kids from different education backgrounds can be effective in reducing the education gap between them.

Keywords: social networks, education, homophily, cultural transmission

JEL Classification: D85, I21, Z13

Suggested Citation

Boucher, Vincent and Del Bello, Carlo Leone and Panebianco, Fabrizio and Verdier, Thierry and Zenou, Yves and Zenou, Yves, Education Transmission and Network Formation (October 20, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3946032 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3946032

Vincent Boucher

Université Laval ( email )

2214 Pavillon J-A. DeSeve
Quebec, Quebec G1K 7P4
Canada

Carlo Leone Del Bello

Paris School of Economics (PSE) ( email )

48 Boulevard Jourdan
Paris, 75014 75014
France

Fabrizio Panebianco

Catholic University of Milan ( email )

Largo Gemelli 1
Milan, MI Milano 20123
Italy

Thierry Verdier

Paris School of Economics (PSE) ( email )

48 Boulevard Jourdan
Paris, 75014
France

Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio) - Department of Economics ( email )

Rua Marques de Sao Vicente, 225/206F
Rio de Janeiro, RJ 22453
Brazil

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Yves Zenou (Contact Author)

Stockholm University ( email )

Universitetsvägen 10
Stockholm, Stockholm SE-106 91
Sweden

Monash University - Department of Economics ( email )

Australia

Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IUI) ( email )

P.O. Box 5501
S-114 85 Stockholm
Sweden

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

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