Intergenerational educational mobility and life course earnings in Israel

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This study brings to the fore the importance of absolute intergenerational educational mobility rates and patterns and its consequences for long-term earnings trajectories. Building on the cumulative advantage mechanism, we develop a theoretical formulation for testing the consequences of educational mobility for long-term earnings trajectories. Using data linking the 1983 and 1995 censuses in Israel with annual registered earnings data from 1995 to 2013, we find striking differences in intergenerational educational mobility rates and patterns between Israel's sub-populations. We then show that the intersection of own and parental education (i.e., intergenerational educational mobility) is associated with growing (dis)advantages over the life course. These results are in sharp contrast to a snapshot perspective, where we find that parental education does not bear influence on their offspring's earnings. Finally, we find gender but not ethno-religious differences in the long-term earnings consequences of educational mobility in Israel. The implications of these findings are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102302
JournalSocial Science Research
StatePublished - Sep 2019


  • Intergenerational educational mobility
  • Israel
  • Life course earnings
  • Long-term economic consequences
  • Upward and downward mobility

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science


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