Contextual Effects on Educational Attainment in Individualized Neighborhoods; Differences across Gender and Social Class

Eva K. Andersson, Stockholm University
Bo Malmberg, Stockholm University

The idea that neighborhoods affect the future life course of young people has over the years, stimulated an impressive amount of empirical work. We propose a method for constructing contextual variables based on scalable, individualized neighborhoods to capture neighborhood effects. What is an appropriate neighborhood size to capture effects on adolescents? Here role models, norms and peer effects could be suggested to emanate from the closest 50, 100 or 400 neighbors. We use an extensive, register-based, geo-coded, longitudinal data set. A cohort of adolescents born in 1980 is analyzed as regards their educational achievements by 2010, when the cohort had reached the age of 30. Earlier studies using the same research design show significant but small effects on education from administratively set neighborhoods. Our results show effects three times greater. Also, scale-dependent effects of marginality as well as significant interaction effects with gender and educational background were found.

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Presented in Session 142: Contextual and Network Influences on Educational Outcomes