Centre for the Analysis of Social Policy

Publications

Contribute to our work

If you wish to contribute to the CASP working paper series, please send details to:

Paul Gregg, CASP Director 
email: casp@bath.ac.uk

Research publications

Publications by Centre members have appeared in leading disciplinary and multi-disciplinary journals.

Visit our on-line publication library for our latest publications.

Working papers

CASP publishes a series of working papers and promotes the reports and other non-article publications of its members. Many Centre members are developing papers that are detailed below are welcome being contacted for further information.

ID Title CASP Author Date
CASP16 Elitist Earnings across Occupations: the White Group Effect in the US and UK Labour Force April 2017
CASP15 Higher Education, Career Opportunities and Intergenerational Inequality
  • Paul Gregg
  • Claire Crawford
  • Lindsey Macmillan
  • Anna Vignoles
  • Gill Wyness
August 2016
CASP14 The Wage Returns to Education over the Life Cycle: Heterogeneity and the role of experience February 2016
CASP13 Nonlinear Estimation of Lifetime Intergenerational Economic Mobility and the Role of Education March 2015
CASP12 Selective schooling systems increase inequality December 2014
CASP11 Moving Towards Estimating Lifetime Intergenerational Economic Mobility in the UK December 2014
CASP10 Eugenics of Inequality: UK and US Fatherhood Premia across the Earnings Distribution, 1974-2010 January 2014
CASP9 Real wages and unemployment in the big squeeze January 2013
CASP8 Domestic violence and private family court proceedings: Promoting child welfare or promoting contact? December 2013
CASP7 Female labor supply and marital instability December 2013
CASP6 Treatment, deterrence or labelling: The perspectives of mentally disordered offenders towards the purpose and operation of social and psychiatric supervision November 2013
CASP5 A decomposition analysis of the relationship between parental income and multiple child outcomes November 2013
CASP4 Incentive and children's dietary choices: A field experiment in primary schools October 2013
CASP3 Productivity over the life cycle: Evidence from professional baseball October 2013
CASP2 With what implications? An assessment of EU migration governance between Union regulation and national diversity September 2013
CASP1 Understanding income mobility: The role of education for intergenerational income persistence in te US, UK and Sweden September 2013

 

Policy briefs

CASP researchers regularly partner with the Instiitute for Policy Research to promote their research.

Title

Author Date
Temporary agency work in the UK today: Precarity intensifies despite protective legislation
  • Thanos Maroukis
May 2015
Court Responses to Rape and Sexual Assault in the UK
  • Olivia Smith
  • Tina Skinner
February 2015
What are the prospects for a wage recovery in the UK?
  • Paul Gregg
  • Marina Fernandez-Salgado
October 2014
Incentives and children's dietary choices: a field experiment in primary schools
  • Michele Belot
  • Jonathan James
  • Patrick Nolan
May 2014
Proving the value of advice: a study of the impact of Citizens’ Advice Bureau services
  • Peter Cressey
  • Michelle Farr
  • Susan Milner
  • Nic Abercrombie
  • Beth Jaynes
April 2014
Youth employment – still waiting for the upturn
  • Paul Gregg
March 2014
 
Mentally disordered offenders’ perspectives on their risk assessment plans
  • Jeremy Dixon
February 2014
Lone mothers, work and depression
  • Susan Harkness
November 2013
Social protection policies in the Middle East and North African region (MENA): new priorities, new debates
  • Rana Jawad
November 2013
The 2013 Comprehensive Spending Review and the implications for making work pay and family poverty
  •  Paul Gregg
  • Susan Harkness
October 2013 
Labour and love: wive's unemployment and divorse risk in its socio-political context
  • Lynn Prince Cooke 
 
The family-work project: working lone mother families and their children
  • Tess Ridge
  • Jane Millar 
 
What a drag: the chilling impact of unemployment on real wages
  •  Paul Gregg
  • Stephen Machin
 
Protecting Palestinian children from political violence
  • Jason Hart
 

 

CASP16: Elitist Earnings across Occupations: the White Group Effect in the US and UK Labour Force

Aurelie Charles, University of Bath, United Kingdom and Sunčica Vujić, University of Antwerp, Belgium.

Elite occupations are characterised by the magnitude of income accumulation. This paper however shows that the cumulative effects on group earnings is a pattern visible across the strata of the society. The literature on identity, stratification, and intersectionality has long shown the importance of group identity in explaining the persistence of income inequality. By taking a group perspective to individuals, the contribution of this paper is to reveal that elitist earnings, whereby one group earn disproportionately at the expense of other demographic groups at the occupational level, exist across the labour force. The case studies on the US and UK labour force show that elitist earnings is a group phenomenon, not specific to elitist occupations. There is in effect a pattern of elitist earnings across occupations for a dominant group, mainly white male or female, at the expense of other racial, ethnic, and gender groups.

Abstract

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CASP15: Higher Education, Career Opportunities and Intergenerational Inequality

Paul Gregg (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences), Claire Crawford, University of Warwick, Lindsey Macmillan, UCL Institute of Education, Anna Vignoles, University of Cambridge and Gill Wyness, UCL Institute of Education.

The UK government has expressed a desire to increase social mobility, with policies to help achieve this aim focused on reducing inequalities in educational attainment. This paper draws together established and new information about the contribution that higher education can make to social mobility using a life-course approach, considering differences by family background in terms of university attendance and achievement, as well as occupation and earnings following graduation. We find substantial socio-economic differences at each stage. Young people from poorer backgrounds are, on average, less likely to go to university than their richer peers. Even amongst the selected group who do go to university, they are less likely to attend the highest status institutions, less likely to graduate and less likely to achieve the highest degree classes. These differences in degree outcomes contribute to the lower average earnings of graduates from poorer families, but earnings differentials go well beyond those driven purely by degree attainment or institution attended. The evidence strongly suggests that, even after taking these factors into account, graduates from affluent families are more likely to obtain a professional job and to see higher earnings growth in the labour market. We discuss the implications of these findings for the prospects of higher education as a route to greater social mobility.

Abstract

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CASP14: The Wage Returns to Education over the Life Cycle: Heterogeneity and the role of experience

Matt Dickson (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences) and Franz Buscha (Westminster Business School, University of Westminster)

Abstract

This paper re-examines the wage returns to the 1972 Raising of the School Leaving Age (RoSLA) in England and Wales using a high-quality administrative panel dataset covering the relevant cohorts for almost 40 years of their labour market careers. With best practice regression discontinuity methods we find at best a zero return to the additional education for men. However, we contend that regression discontinuity methods in this context will give unreliable estimates of the return. Using the panel data to correct for this we find a local average treatment effect of 7% over the lifetime for this additional year of education.

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CASP 13: Nonlinear Estimation of Lifetime Intergenerational Economic Mobility and the Role of Education

Paul Gregg (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences)

Abstract

Previous studies of intergenerational income mobility have typically focused at on estimating persistence across generations at the mean of the distribution of sons’ earnings. Here, we use the relatively new unconditional quantile regression (UQR) technique to consider how the association between parental income in childhood and sons’ adult earnings vary across the distribution of sons’ earnings. We find a J-shaped relationship between parental income and sons’ earnings, with parental income a particularly strong predictor of labour market success for those at the bottom, and to a greater extent, the top of the earnings distribution. We explore the potential role of early skills, education and early labour market attachment in this process. Worryingly, we find that education is not as meritocratic as we might hope, with the role of parental income dominating that of education at the top of the distribution of earnings. Early unemployment experience has long-lasting impacts on sorting those at the bottom, alongside parental income. 

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CASP 12: Selective schooling systems increase inequality

Simon Burgess (University of Bristol), Matt Dickson (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciencs), Lindsey Macmillan (Institute of Education)

Abstract

We investigate the impact on earnings inequality of a selective education system in which school assignment is based on initial test scores. We use a large, representative household panel survey to compare adult earnings inequality of those growing up under a selective education system with those educated under a comprehensive system. Controlling for a range of background characteristics and the current location, the wage distribution for individuals who grew up in selective schooling areas is quantitatively more unequal, and the difference is statistically significant. The total effect sizes are large: 14% of the raw 90-10 earnings gap and 18% of the conditional 90-10 earnings gap can be explained by differences across schooling systems.

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CASP 11: Moving Towards Estimating Lifetime Intergenerational Economic Mobility in the UK

Paul Gregg (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences), Lindsey MacMillan (Institute of Education), and Claudia Vittori (University of Bath)

Abstract

Estimates of intergenerational economic mobility that use point in time measures of income and earnings suffer from lifecycle and attenuation bias. We consider these issues for the National Child Development Study (NCDS) and British Cohort Study (BCS) for the first time, highlighting how common methods used to deal with these biases leave a residual bias which is of uncertain sign and magnitude. To attempt to overcome this, we offer the first estimates of near lifetime intergenerational economic mobility for the UK. In doing so, we discuss a third potential bias, regularly ignored in the literature, driven by spells out of work. When all three biases are considered, our best estimate of lifetime intergenerational economic persistence in the UK is 0.43. Whilst we argue that this is the best available estimate to date, we discuss why there is good reason to believe that this is still a lower bound.

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CASP 10: Eugenics of Inequality: UK and US Fatherhood Premia across the Earnings Distribution, 1974-2010

Lynn Prince Cooke (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences)

Abstract


Fathers in many countries enjoy a wage premium as compared with childless men, but parenthood does not benefit all men equally. Income inequality among men has increased markedly since the 1970s, suggesting that differences among fathers have grown over time. Five waves of LIS data and regressions of the recentered influence function are used to compare the unconditional quantile partial effects of children along UK and US men’s earnings distributions. In the 1970s, most UK and US fathers enjoyed a modest premium regardless of their relative earnings, which decreased as number of children increased.  This bonus was not attributable to household specialization in paid work, as once controlling for partnership, wives’ earnings did not significantly alter the fatherhood premium for most men.  Since the 1970s, a more eugenic structure has emerged. Net of human capital and labor supply, the lowest-earning fathers in both countries face penalties. UK fathers’ premia across the remainder of the distribution are similar. In contrast, US fathers' premia continue to increase as earnings increase, which translates into ever-greater absolute fatherhood bonuses for the most-privileged US men.

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CASP 9: Real wages and unemployment in the big squeeze

Paul Gregg (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences), Stephen Machin and Mariña Fernández-Salgado (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences)

Abstract

Real wage growth in the UK labour market has slowed down, stagnated and recently turned sharply negative. In this paper, we document the nature of real wage changes across the wage distribution over the last three decades, showing that the recent period of stagnant and falling real wage growth represents a distinct break of trend that pre-dates the onset of recession. We explore whether unemployment has become a stronger moderating influence on real wage growth since the trend break and document, using aggregate economy-wide data and regional panel data, that real wage-unemployment sensitivities have become stronger in the period from 2003 onwards. Finally, we offer some assessment of possible drivers of this increased sensitivity of wages to unemployment.

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CASP 8: Domestic violence and private family court proceedings: Promoting child welfare or promoting contact?

Gillian Macdonald (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences)

Abstract

Despite improved understanding regarding domestic violence, child welfare and child contact, and related policy developments, concerns persist regarding how the family courts deal with fathers’ violence in contested contact/ residence cases. In the study reported here, analysis was undertaken of welfare reports prepared for the courts in such cases in order to investigate how and to what extent issues of domestic violence and children’s perspectives on these issues were taken into account when making recommendations to the courts. Analysis found that despite evidence of domestic violence and child welfare concerns, contact with fathers was viewed as desirable and inevitable in the vast majority of cases.

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CASP 7: Female labor supply and marital instability

Kerry L. Papps (University of Bath, Department of Economics)

Abstract

A simple model of labor supply among married women in the face of marital instability is presented. This predicts that a woman’s labor supply response to a given change in the probability of divorce is determined by her discount factor and the degree to which her wage is affected by past hours of work. Data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 are then used to test these predictions. Married women are found to work longer hours when they face a high probability of divorce in the following year. Consistent with theory, this magnitude of this response is found to be biggest among women with high returns to work hours. However, a woman’s discount factor is not found to have a significant effect on her labor supply responsiveness in most specifications. Similar relationships are found when a woman’s happiness with her marriage is used as a proxy for divorce risk.

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CASP 6: Treatment, deterrence or labelling: The perspectives of mentally disordered offenders towards the purpose and operation of social and psychiatric supervision

Jeremy Dixon (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences)

Abstract

Mentally disordered offenders are a group of service users who experience substantial amounts of control and supervision.  This paper uses theories of social control to analyse the way in which the formal mechanisms of control are understood by this group.  Nineteen semi-structured interviews with mentally disordered offenders in England who were subject to section 41 of the Mental Health Act 1983 (as amended by the Mental Health Act 2007) provided the empirical basis for this study.  Mentally disordered offenders held a number of perspectives on the order.  First, the order was seen to act as a mechanism for highlighting those suffering from a mental disorder and for providing appropriate treatment.  Second, the order was viewed as a form of disciplinary control through which societal norms might be internalised.  Third, the order was seen as labelling offenders in a manner which was experienced as limiting and oppressive.  A number of research participants were aware that the order acted to limit staff actions.  The offenders who held this view saw the order as a means through which they might shape the support that they received in order to further their own aims.  The paper concludes by discussing the meanings given to the order by research participants and by considering the implications for social work practice.  

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CASP 5: A decomposition analysis of the relationship between parental income and multiple child outcomes

Elizabeth Washbrook (University of Bristol), Paul Gregg (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences) and Carol Propper (Imperial College London)

Abstract

This paper explores the relationship between family income and six child developmental outcomes in mid-childhood. The outcomes span development in cognitive, emotional, behaviour and health domains. We examine the income gradients in a consistent manner that allows comparison across outcomes and decompose the income gradients into two overlapping sets of pathways. The first operates through observed parental behaviours and their inputs into children that are associated with income. The second captures the influence of other observed family characteristics, such as low parental education, that tend to co-occur with low income. There is also a residual portion of the income gradient that is not associated with observed inputs or measures of parental background and human capital. We find that the extent of the income gradient differs across outcomes. The strongest gradients are associated with cognitive outcomes, the weakest with health outcomes. Some inputs account for part of the explained income gradient across all six child outcomes but it is more common for specific inputs to be strongly associated with a limited number of outcomes. This variation in the role of inputs suggests that the underlying mediators of the social gradients in different domains of child development are not the same.

Full Paper coming soon

 

CASP 4: Incentive and children's dietary choices: A field experiment in primary schools

Michele Belot (University of Edinburgh), Jonathan James (University of Bath, Department of Economics) and Patrick Nolen (University of Essex)

Abstract

We conduct a field experiment in 31 primary schools testing whether temporary incentives are effective in increasing children's choice and consumption of fruit and vegetables. We compare the effects of two incentive schemes (piece rate and competition) on choice and consumption over the course of the intervention, immediately after the incentives are removed and six months later. The intervention had positive effects on choice and consumption and the competition works better overall. The treatment effects vary dramatically by age, gender and socio-economic background. We find little evidence of sustained long term effects, except for children from poorer socio-economic backgrounds.

Full Paper coming soon

 

CASP 3: Productivity over the life cycle: Evidence from professional baseball

Kerry L. Papps (University of Bath, Department of Economics)

Abstract

This paper examines whether effort and productivity are optimally allocated over the life cycle, in response to anticipated changes in the rewards for performance. A simple model is presented in which effort is found to be positively related to the marginal returns to effort and to the marginal utility of lifetime income. Major league baseball provides an ideal setting in which to test the predictions of this model, because the nature of the salary bargaining system means that the pay-performance gradient increases suddenly and substantially at predetermined points in a player’s career. The expected pay-performance gradient facing each player is estimated, using annual data for 2005-2010. As expected, this is found to have a significant positive effect on performance, both for pitchers and non-pitchers. In addition, accumulated forecast errors in lifetime income are found to have a negative effect on performance, consistent with the theory.

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CASP 2: With what implications? An assessment of EU migration governance between Union regulation and national diversity

Emma Carmel (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences)

Abstract

The analysis of EU migration policy has primarily been focused on evaluating its relationship to EU law, or its application to individual member states. This paper argues that neither focus can address the full implications and effects of EU migration governance. The Union’s migration and free movement policies set out to organize populations both within and beyond its formal borders. They are part of the broader governance of the European Union as an integrated market, and as an international policymaker. As such, the characteristics and effects of migration governance across the EU as a whole need to be assessed. At the EU level, EU policy and law on migration creates an illusion of policy coherence, applied to all member states, incomers and residents. Yet these apparently coherent EU policies always co-exist with three confounding factors 1) national and local variation in migration, integration and social policies 2) national and local labour market variation, particularly in the role of informal economy and 3) profound member state hierarchies in the EU’s political economy, enhanced by the ongoing crisis. Yet this does not mean that the EU’s migration policymaking is irrelevant to member states. Rather, migration governance in the EU is co-produced by the cross-cutting and sometimes contradictory policies of other actors. This co-produced governance, with its illusion of policy coherence, both disguises and entrenches significant hierarchy among member states. It contributes to an EU polity which manages diversity through inequalities.

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CASP 1: Understanding income mobility: The role of education for intergenerational income persistence in the US, UK and Sweden

Paul Gregg (University of Bath, Department of Social & Policy Sciences), Jan O Jonsson (University of Oxford, Nuffield College), Lindsey Macmillan (Institute of Education) and Carina Mood (Institute for Futures Studies)

Abstract

A growing number of studies in several countries over the past twenty years have documented the persistence in incomes across generations, and much of the current literature is seeking to understand the processes driving intergenerational mobility and how these differ across time periods and across countries. Education is commonly seen, just as in sociological studies of social mobility or status attainment, as the key driving force of intergenerational associations. In this paper we study the role of education for intergenerational income associations in three countries over time, and across the life-span of sons. We pay particular attention to issues of life-cycle bias and measurement error in modelling income mobility in a comparative setting. To explore the role of education, we utilise a three-stage framework that decomposes the intergenerational elasticity into three parts: the relationship between income and education, the returns to education, and the direct relationship between parental income and their child’s income in the next generation after controlling for education. We find that the US and the UK have high levels of income persistence (low mobility) across generations while Sweden is more moderate. Levels of educational inequality are surprisingly similar in all three countries with the majority of the difference between the US/UK and Sweden working through unequal returns to education and, more strikingly, inequality of opportunities for people with similar educational qualifications.

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