We provide new evidence about long-run trends in the transmission of economic status across generations for both men and women. Most historical studies of intergenerational mobility rely on linking individuals across multiple census records using surnames, and married women have historically changed their surnames upon marriage. As such, it is difficult for most such studies to say anything about mobility among women. In the proposed work, we circumvent this problem using a methodology that relies on the socioeconomic content of first names. We measure trends in assortative mating and in the geography of intergenerational mobility within North America. This work will focus on the role of institutions in shaping long-run mobility trends, emphasizing on the complex interrelationship between intergenerational mobility and marriage institutions. By sorting individuals into families, marriage plays a critical role in the transmission of human capital and wealth across generations.
Year Project Started:
Claudia Olivetti and M. Daniele Paserman
Boston College and Boston University
(e.g type 1000 for 1,000)