Does improved local supply of schooling enhance intergenerational mobility in education? Evidence from Jordan

Ragui Assaad, Mohamed Saleh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The impact of the growth of the local supply of public schools in the post-Colonial period on intergenerational mobility in education is a first-order question in the Arab World. This question is examined in Jordan using a unique dataset that links individual data on own schooling and parents' schooling for adults, from a household survey, with the supply of schools in the subdistrict of birth at the time the individual was of age to enroll, from a school census. The identification strategy exploits the variation in the supply of basic and secondary public schools across cohorts and subdistricts of birth in Jordan, controlling for year and subdistrict-of-birth fixed effects and interactions of governorate and year-of-birth fixed effects. The findings show that the local availability of basic public schools does, in fact, increase intergenerational mobility in education. For instance, a one standard deviation increase in the supply of basic public schools per 1,000 people reduces the fatherson and mother-son associations of schooling by 18-20 percent and the father-daughter and mother-daughter associations by 33-44 percent. However, an increase in the local supply of secondary public schools does not seem to have an effect on the intergenerational mobility in education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)633-655
Number of pages23
JournalWorld Bank Economic Review
Volume32
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Ragui Assaad (corresponding author) is a professor at Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota; his e-mail address is assaad@umn.edu. Mohamed Saleh is an assistant professor at Toulouse School of Economics and Institute for Advanced Study in Toulouse; his e-mail address is mohamed.saleh@tse-fr.eu. This article was supported by a grant from the Economic Research Forum as part of the research project on Inequality of Opportunity and Inequality of Outcomes in the Arab Region. Saleh thanks Norhan Muhab for her excellent research assistance and gratefully acknowledges the financial support from the ANR-Labex IAST. A supplemental appendix to this article is available at https://academic.oup.com/wber.

Keywords

  • Education
  • Inequality of opportunity
  • Intergenerational mobility
  • Middle East
  • Supply of schooling

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