Fabian T. Pfeffer photo

Status Attainment and Wealth in the United States and Germany

Publication Abstract

Pfeffer, Fabian T. 2011. "Status Attainment and Wealth in the United States and Germany." In Persistence, Privilege, and Parenting: The Comparative Study of Intergenerational Mobility edited by T. Smeeding, R. Erikson, and M. Jäntti. Russell Sage.

Research on intergenerational mobility typically conceptualizes and measures family background as any combination of parental education, parental occupation, and family income. One important feature of economic circumstances that is less frequently included in these studies is family wealth, or net worth. Wealth is a dimension of economic well-being that suffers particularly stark inequalities. These inequalities in wealth may create unequal opportunities for children over and above those created by other socio-economic characteristics of families. Recent research has begun to document strong and independent effects of parental wealth on children's educational opportunities for the United States. This paper extends this research by documenting the role of wealth for the entire status attainment process, that is, not only educational but also occupational attainment. In addition, it assesses the degree to which the association between parental wealth and attainment differs by national context. Drawing on national panel datasets – the NLSY-79, the PSID, and the GSOEP – this paper investigates how the link between wealth inequality and inequality in opportunities differs between the United States and Germany.

Countries of focus: Germany, United States of America.

Wellbeing of Older Persons in Southeast Asia (Bibliography)

Browse | Search | Books | Next

PSC In The News

RSS Feed icon

Miller comments on local efforts to provide healthcare to vulnerable populations

Shaefer discusses Americans with tight financial resources have fewer options as they navigate coronavirus closures and layoffs in NYT

Mehta's research on life expectancy crisis in the USA: The opioid crisis is not the decisive factor

More News

Highlights

Data Scientist Job Open at PSC/PDHP

New Investigator Mentoring Program (PDHP) Applications Sought

More Highlights


Connect with PSC follow PSC on Twitter Like PSC on Facebook