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Inequality of opportunity and intergenerational persistence in Latin America

Brunori, Paolo ORCID: 0000-0002-1624-905X, Ferreira, Francisco H. G. and Neidhöfer, Guido (2023) Inequality of opportunity and intergenerational persistence in Latin America. III Working Papers (109). International Inequalities Institute, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.

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How strong is the transmission of socio-economic status across generations in Latin America? To answer this question, we first review the empirical literature on intergenerational mobility and inequality of opportunity for the region, summarizing results for both income and educational outcomes. We find that, whereas the income mobility literature is hampered by a paucity of representative datasets containing linked information on parents and children, the inequality of opportunity approach – which relies on other inherited and pre-determined circumstance variables – has suffered from arbitrariness in the choice of population partitions. Two new data-driven approaches – one aligned with the ex-ante and the other with the ex-post conception of inequality of opportunity – are introduced to address this shortcoming. They yield a set of new inequality of opportunity estimates for twenty-seven surveys covering nine Latin American countries over various years between 2000 and 2015. In most cases, more than half of the current generation’s inequality is inherited from the past – with a range between 44% and 63%. We argue that on balance, given the parsimony of the population partitions, these are still likely to be underestimates.

Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2023 The Author(s)
Divisions: International Inequalities Institute
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
JEL classification: D - Microeconomics > D3 - Distribution > D31 - Personal Income, Wealth, and Their Distributions
I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I3 - Welfare and Poverty > I39 - Other
J - Labor and Demographic Economics > J6 - Mobility, Unemployment, and Vacancies > J62 - Job, Occupational, and Intergenerational Mobility
O - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth > O1 - Economic Development > O15 - Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
Date Deposited: 27 Oct 2023 12:21
Last Modified: 05 Jul 2024 08:30

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