Upward Mobility Study Finds Children From Two Parent Families Are More Successful

Posted: May 21, 2015 in Culture

Across the country, the researchers found five factors associated with strong upward mobility: less segregation by income and race, lower levels of income inequality, better schools, lower rates of violent crime, and a larger share of two-parent households. In general, the effects of place are sharper for boys than for girls, and for lower-income children than for rich.

“The broader lesson of our analysis,” Mr. Chetty and Mr. Hendren write, “is that social mobility should be tackled at a local level.” Here’s where Manhattan stands among its neighbors.

To remove variation that was simply caused by different types of people living in different areas, Mr. Chetty and Mr. Hendren based the latest estimates on the incomes of more than five million children who moved between areas when they were growing up in the 1980s and 1990s. These estimates are causal: They suggest moving a given child to a new area would in fact cause him or her to do better or worse.

In the new estimates, Manhattan ranks among the worst counties in the country for girls from lower-income families.

Here, better or worse is measured by the household incomes of children in early adulthood. This makes New York look worse than it would if individual incomes were used, because it, along with Northern California, has some of the lowest marriage rates in the country. Manhattan is actually better than most of the country at raising the individual incomes of poor girls. Marriage rates, too, are strongly affected by where children grow up.

Full Story @ [NYTimes]


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