Geography of Intergenerational Mobility

Recent research suggests that spatial variation in intergenerational mobility, in its multiple dimensions, and in equality of opportunity is at least as pronounced between sub-national regions as between countries. The sparse evidence on spatio-temporal trends in social mobility also highlights that the decline in social mobility in high-income countries is driven by a handful of regions providing fewer and fewer opportunities for upward mobility, for instance via labor market insecurity and a lack of employment possibilities. Much of the recent literature focuses on characterizations of the geography of intergenerational mobility in terms of outcomes, such as educational attainment. Findings on the spatial variation in equality of opportunity and intergenerational mobility have triggered both new debates on place-based versus people-centered redistribution policies and advances in estimating place and neighborhood effects. Much less, however, has been done to understand the causes and consequences of geographic variations in intergenerational mobility, particularly at the sub-national scale, such as the provision of early childhood education, the access to health care, or structural economic change. On top of that, obtaining estimates of intergenerational mobility at the sub-national scale that are comparable across countries remains a key challenge in the field.

This session offers a platform for the discussion of research on the geography of intergenerational mobility in its multiple dimensions and at different scales, its causes, and its consequences. We welcome contributions from different disciplines, and papers that cover theoretical, conceptual, methodological and/or measurement aspects as well as research addressing policy challenges and suggestions. In particular, we welcome submissions on the following topics: