Educational Careers and Social Inequality – Analysis of the Impact of Social Origin on Educational Career Patterns and Their Labor Market Outcomes from a Comparative Perspective

Research question/goal: 

This project examined two research questions to deepen the understanding of social origin on delayed achievement of education. First, whether social origin influences if young adults re-enroll into higher education. Second, whether returns to education on the labour market differ between different educational career patterns. The second question has important implications for the consequences of the first question in the context of intergenerational social inequality. These questions were approached using secondary analysis of existing longitudinal micro-data. Since the moderation of the micro-processes through institutional conditions is of particular interest, the analyses involved a comparison of both processes over three societies, Germany, Sweden and the United States. The focus was on analysis for the German case. The comparison cases, however, added additional insights on the processes in educational systems which are similar to recent developments of the German system.Project funding of the BMBF ended 30.04.2013. Nevertheless, several articles were published after end of funding and a dissertation thesis was submitted. For the BMBF a summary of all relevant results had been delivered, covering research results and discussing them in the light of policy making. The project is now completed.

Fact sheet

2010 to 2013
Data Sources: 
longitudinal micro-data
Geographic Space: 
Germany, Sweden, United States