Program > Papers by author > Asher Sam

Monday 12
B8 - Equity, justice and other normative criteria and measurement I
Chair: Sauro Mocetti
› 14:05 - 14:30 (25min)
› Room 103 - B. Martinu
Estimating Intergenerational Mobility with Coarse Data: A Nonparametric Approach
Paul Novosad  1@  , Charlie Rafkin  2@  , Sam Asher  4, 3@  
1 : Dartmouth College  -  Website
Hanover, NH 03755 USA -  United States
2 : National Bureau of Economic Research  (NBER)  -  Website
4 : World Bank Research Group  (WB)  -  Website
3 : University of Oxford (UK)  (Oxford)  -  Website
Department of Economics, University of Oxford Oxford OX1 3UQ, UK -  United Kingdom

Using data from comprehensive socioeconomic censuses undertaken in
India in 2002 and 2012, we provide new estimates of
intergenerational educational mobility over the last 40 years. Because
the data sources are censuses containing the near-universe of Indian
educations rather than samples, our estimates are very precise, and
there is wide scope for examining heterogeneity across space and time.
We first show that, as measured by the intergenerational correlation
between fathers' and sons' levels of educational attainment, mobility
has remained constant over the last 40 years. Previous estimates of
improvement in intergenerational educational mobility were confounded
by increases in average attainment and increases in the variance of
the education distribution. Further, we show that scheduled castes
have persistently higher mobility than the general population---a
difference which has marginally shrunk over time, but remains
significant. This mobility advantage is consistent with the average
convergence between these groups that has been observed in other
studies. Finally, we present estimates of the local geographic
correlates of mobility. Proximity to towns and access to public goods
strongly predict intergenerational mobility, but various measures of
district/village-level inequality are negatively associated with
mobility. Our results highlight that while modernization has
dramatically improved overall educational attainment, it has not
substantively changed the persistence of birth advantages.

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