Journal of Population Economics

, Volume 25, Issue 2, pp 591–608 | Cite as

An examination of paternal and maternal intergenerational transmission of schooling

  • Chiara PronzatoEmail author
Original Paper


More educated parents are observed to have better educated children. However, previous research has found conflicting results regarding the role of fathers and mothers: in most cases, a strong positive paternal effect was found with a negligible maternal effect; in fewer cases, opposite results were found. In this paper, I use a sample of Norwegian twins to evaluate the impact of sample size and sample selection on the estimates’ robustness: results concerning the effect of mother’s education are very sensitive to the sample size, while the selection of the sample seems to be a key to reconciling previous results.


Intergenerational transmission Education Twin-estimator 

JEL Classification

C23 I2 



I thank my Ph.D. supervisor John Ermisch, Rolf Aaberge, Richard Berthoud, Ugo Colombino, Francesco Figari, Helena Holmlund, Cheti Nicoletti, and Steve Pudney for their comments. I am very grateful to two anonymous referees whose precious comments and suggestions improved my work and to Deborah Cobb-Clark for the invaluable advice. The financial support received by the Norwegian Research Council and the European Research Council are gratefully acknowledged. Any error should be attributed to the author.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.DONDENA Centre for Research on Social DynamicsBocconi UniversityMilanItaly
  2. 2.Statistics NorwayOsloNorway
  3. 3.CHILD Collegio Carlo AlbertoTurinItaly
  4. 4.ISER University of EssexColchesterUK

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