Family and education: intergenerational educational transmission within families and the influence of education on partner choice and fertility; analysis and microsimulation projection for Austria
Spielauer, M., Schwarz, F., Städtner, K., Schmid, K.
Schriftenreihe des Österreichischen Instituts für Familienforschung 11
196 pages. Vienna, Austrian Institute for Family Studies (2003)
In this volume on “Family and Education” we will study the intergenerational educational transmission within families and the influence of education on partner choice and fertility. The study can be divided into an analytical part and a synthesis of the resulting behavioral models to a comprehensive computer microsimulation model, which allows to project the educational composition of the population into the future. The analytical part focuses (1) on individual school choices in dependence on parents’ educational attainment, sex and rural urban setting, (2) partnership formation by education, i.e. the educational
composition of couples and related changes over time, and (3) fertility differentials between educational groups.
The models are based on the retrospective event history data collected in the special program of the 1996 micro census, which was also used to generate the starting population for projections. The analysis of school choices reveals a very strong influence of the educational attainment of parents leading to strong intergenerational transmission mechanisms within families, i.e. considerable intergenerational persistence of educational careers within families. In contrast to the ongoing educational expansion at the population level, very stable behavioral relationships can be found on the micro-level when accounting for the parental educational attainment. Regarding the educational composition of couples, we again find a situation, in which most changes have already leveled off and led to almost time-invariant distributions. Computer micro-simulation
reveals that today’s patterns are likely to remain unchanged also in future. The second related behavior that affects the future educational composition of the population are fertility differentials between educational groups. We use computer micro-simulation in order to find “proper” parity distributions by educational group that produce observed birth numbers by education in a retrospective simulation. Using the resulting parameterization we will finally apply the microsimulation model to project the educational composition of the population
into the future. As all parameters are assumed time-invariant, the educational composition converges towards a stable equilibrium. In order to determine the effect of fertility differentials on this equilibrium, we “run” a second scenario of uniform fertility behaviors and use the resulting equilibriums for a comparative analysis.
Keywords: Austria, education, family formation, fertility, simulation