English title: Institutional change and parental compensation in intergenerational attainment
Author(s): Heta Pöyliö - Jani Erola - Elina Kilpi-Jakonen -
Type: Journal article
Previous research has shown how institutional changes, such as educational expansion, have weakened parental influence on educational attainment. We extend this analysis to occupational attainment and put forth a parental compensation hypothesis: as the origin-education (OE) association weakens, parents act to compensate for this in order to maintain their influence on the child’s occupational attainment. We should see this as a strengthened origin-destination association net of education (net OD). Further, we study whether these compensatory actions are triggered by changes in educational institutions and whether the institutional changes that reduce educational inequality are the same ones that prompt parental compensation. We have linked data from five waves of the European Social Survey (2002–10) with data on educational institutions matched to birth cohorts born 1941–80 in 25 countries. We find weakened OE and strengthened net OD associations, supporting our parental compensation hypothesis. Multilevel mixed effects regression analyses reveal that reforms lengthening compulsory education, and the increased access to and the attainment of higher education have had a positive influence on parental compensation. As a conclusion, a later school leaving age seems to secure increased parental influence on children’s occupational attainment, while parents seem to have reacted to a lesser extent on the changes in higher education.
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Journal: British Journal of Sociology