English title: Intergenerational Transmission of Education Across European Countries and Cohorts

Author(s): Majka van Doorn - Ioana Pop - Maarten H. J. Wolbers -

Language: English

Type: Journal article

Year: 2011


This article investigates the intergenerational transmission of education in 28 European countries. The main aim is to answer the following questions: (1) To what degree are parents’ education and the educational attainment of their children related in different countries and cohorts, and (2) how can we explain the country-cohort variation in these effects by looking at contextual characteristics? In order to explain this variation, we focus on the degree of industrialisation, female labour force participation, the structure of the educational system and the political ideology of a country. Regarding industrialisation, we do not only take its size into account, but also the pace of the development. Multilevel estimates on 76,821 individuals nested in 250 country-cohort combinations from three waves of the European Social Survey (2002-2006) show that we cannot fully support the prediction of decreasing intergenerational transmission of education solely under the influence of industrialisation. While being an important factor that positively influences the general level of schooling for a certain cohort in a particular country, its decreasing effect of the parents’ education on their children’s schooling is complemented by the other interacting contextual factors, such as female labour force participation and the quality of the school system.

Volume: 13

Issue: 1

From page no: 93

To page no: 117

Refereed: Yes

DOI: 10.1080/14616696.2010.540351

Journal: European Societies: The Official Journal of the European Sociological Association

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