The Origins of Intergenerational Associations: Lessons from Swedish Adoption Data

39 Pages Posted: 27 Sep 2005

See all articles by Anders Bjorklund

Anders Bjorklund

Stockholm University; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Mikael Lindahl

University of Bonn; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Erik Plug

University of Amsterdam - Amsterdam School of Economics (ASE); Tinbergen Institute; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Date Written: September 2005

Abstract

We use unique Swedish data to estimate intergenerational associations between adoptees and their biological and adoptive parents. We argue that the impact from biological parents captures broad pre-birth factors, including genes and prenatal environment, and the impact from adoptive parents represents broad post-birth factors, such as childhood environment, for the intergenerational association in education and income. We find that both pre- and post-birth factors contribute to intergenerational transmissions, and that pre-birth factors are more important for mother's education and less important for father's income. We also find some evidence for a positive interaction effect between post-birth environment and pre-birth factors.

Keywords: intergenerational mobility, nature and nurture, income, education, adoption data

JEL Classification: I20, J30 J62

Suggested Citation

Bjorklund, Anders and Lindahl, Mikael and Plug, Erik, The Origins of Intergenerational Associations: Lessons from Swedish Adoption Data (September 2005). IZA Discussion Paper No. 1739. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=807485

Anders Bjorklund (Contact Author)

Stockholm University ( email )

Swedish Institute for Social Research (SOFI)
S-106 91 Stockholm
Sweden
+46 8 163452 (Phone)
+46 8 154670 (Fax)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Mikael Lindahl

University of Bonn ( email )

Postfach 2220
Bonn, D-53012
Germany

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Erik Plug

University of Amsterdam - Amsterdam School of Economics (ASE) ( email )

Roetersstraat 11
1018 WB Amsterdam
Netherlands
+31 20 5254311 (Phone)
+31 20 5254310 (Fax)

Tinbergen Institute

Burg. Oudlaan 50
Rotterdam, 3062 PA
Netherlands

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

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