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How the Economy affects the education

"The hell bride of the wind, constantly blowing, kidnapped the spirits with violence'gem swing, and torment, up and down, turning," writes Dante Alighieri in the fifth Canto of hell in his "Divine Comedy". The man is, indeed, like Paolo and Francesca in Dante's circle of Hell, mercilessly wielding psychological forces delivered, the control his behavior? Or he follows, more or less conscious, rational principles? This question has occupied philosophers and scientists for centuries, and more recently Economists.

with regard to the issue of children's education, seem to be the irrationa lists with their arguments to have the upper hand. Parents, it seems, fashions and Trends, and change your posture often, depending on what the experts said, targeted at the particular Fears and uncertainties, recommend. In the seventies, the consensus ruled up to now, the century-long proven method – obedience from the claim, and misconduct punished, as a terrible concept.

With the introduction of new values, the authority of parents and teachers falter, the hippie movement powered the anti-authoritarian mood of the new radicalism. Then the Trend changed again. Since the eighties, parents devote themselves to the education of their children more intensively. According to the latest Figures interact with American parents today for an hour per day longer with their offspring, as the parents did in the seventies. Most of these activities aim to motivate the children to individual success. However, the last word is not spoken yet: The "Free-Range parents" movement promoted the return to an idyllic world in which such a delusion has no place.

In the mirror of the Gini coefficient

In our book "Love, Money, and Parenting. How Economics Explains the Way We Raise Our Kids" show, Matthias Doepke, and I on the basis of historical and international studies, that the education of children in a much larger mass of rational – more rational, but also economic Considerations, is characterized as a superficial impression suggests. The differences in the children's education mirrors to a large extent, different manifestations of economic inequality.

the Chinese and Japanese have many cultural similarities, but in the education of children they are far apart. In international surveys, 90 percent of Chinese parents emphasize the benefits of diligence and hard work, only 20 percent of the value of imagination to appreciate. In Japan, however, a little over 30 percent for their diligence and hard work speak just, fantasy gets much more approval than in China. The parents are divided on the basis of the values they promote, classify 65 percent of the Japanese parents as permissive, in China there are only less than 10 percent. Most of the Chinese prefer the authoritarian parenting.

the Swiss and German parents are more relaxed than British, but more involved than those in Scandinavia.

Similar to the differences found between parents in the United States and Canada, the American are more authoritative than the canadian. Wherein the roots of these differences? In the economic conditions, as we demonstrate. The Chinese and U.S. society, are marked by pronounced inequality, the Gini coefficient for income is around 40 percent. In Japan and Canada, inequality is weaker, the Gini coefficient of 30 percent.

This pattern is also present in Europe. Swiss and German parents are more relaxed – so permissive as the British, but more involved than those in Scandinavia. Germany and Switzerland have a lower level of inequality than the United Kingdom, but larger than Norway and Sweden. This pattern is confirmed in a number of industrial countries.

parents love their children and want you to be happy and successful. Different economic conditions and Trends, or psychological phenomena – influence their behavior, by creating different incentives and constraints. In a strong inequality in society, a good education pays off later in a high degree, and the school system is designed to be very competitive, it's a lot. According to the parents in the education of their children intensely, pushing to hard work and good grades – they are the springboard for a successful career. At the other end of the spectrum in turn, in countries with low inequality, promotes the permissivere education at children's independence, imagination and encouraged self-determination.

The United States and China are rather based on individual performance.

Which model is better? An absolute answer to it. Our data show that intensive parental involvement in a society that places great value on academic performance, can be quite a proven concept, even if it dampens the creativity of the children. Free education can work well, where teamwork and independent Thinking and rewarded appreciated. In any case, the decision is determined for a particular concept of parenting to a large extent on economic factors. In addition, these different models in the education of the children bring out differences in the way how human capital is formed, and ultimately end up in a different society models. The United States and China are rather based on individual performance, Sweden or, to a certain extent, Switzerland, on a wider social capital are aligned.

what's next? Our theory builds on that in the future the changes in the economic environment will affect the way how parents educate their children. The Trend is set to continue growing in the economy, is likely to be reflected in education, especially in the upper and upper-middle class, the anxious parents will increase their efforts to promote the advancement of their offspring.

"robot safely" train

But the coming generations of parents will see new challenges. The automation will not make it among the medium-skilled Jobs, but also the highly skilled capture, and soon, even the most prestigious professions obsolete. The parents will have to strive to shape the future of their children, "the robot safely". The choice of the right direction – for example, more STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) as a non-mathematical areas – is always given greater importance.

The increase rise of intensive parenting is also likely that the differences between the Poor and the rich. In the USA, the increase in parental involvement goes hand in hand with a growing gap between children from different socio-economic Background or the conditions under which they grow up. Poorer families can no longer afford in this tough, competitive fight to keep up and give up. In the United States, this is compounded by the increasing Segregation in terms of residential area. Another factor is the Dwindling family ties in the case of the less Wealthy.

to understand These social phenomena, requires a solid theoretical basis and reliable statistical methods. On rational Considerations based approaches help in understanding and can point the way for policy reforms to create a better society. The "waving of hell bride of the wind" is not a suitable guiding principle for social scientific considerations.

Fabrizio Zilibotti is Professor of Economics at Yale University.

(financial and economic)

Created: 13.03.2019, 15:49 PM

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