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Social Mobility - Essay Example

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Social mobility has been reflected upon in various societies, in the world. This is due to the role it plays in highlighting the status of a given society. The term reflects on the relationship that exists between the socio-economic statuses of parents in relation to what the children will achieve once they get older…
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Social Mobility
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Intergenerational mobility depends on a variety of factors. These that play a role in individual economic success and includes inheritable traits and factors related to the family and social context in which individuals develop (OECD 184). Some of the environmental factors are related to public plans while others are largely influenced by policies. For example, there are policies that control access to human capital formation. These may include public support for early childhood as well as policies that may increase or reduce economic and other barriers to accessing higher education (OECD 184). Therefore, in economic terms, intergenerational social mobility can be defined in terms of the potential to move up (or down) the income or wage scale relative to one's parents (OECD 184). In United States, different factors influence social mobility. Some of these factors have acted as a barrier to social mobility amongst many people in the society. A description of barriers to social mobility in American society helps in predicting future of children, point challenges, and effort that need to be undertaken to improve social mobility. One of the existing barriers to social mobility is racial differences. Racial differences in family background may result to racial differences in the accumulation of human capital (Kearney 46). Such kind of human capital is thought to relate to education attainment. This may arise in terms of parental wealth and emphasis on learning. (Kearney 46). Traditionally, different models assume that an personal achievement is based on ability. If this is the case, there should be a correspondence between black and white children. However, there appears to be cheaper labor market expectations for black children. Therefore, the black children’s choose a lower level of human capital investment (Kearney 46). Moreover, due to the constraints of getting credits, they are most likely not to associate with massive forms of investments. Therefore, if minorities families tend to have less access to credit and wealth than other families, they are also less likely to get quality education than the white children’ of the same ability (Kearney 46). A report indicates that children from low-income families have less than one percent chance of reaching the top 5% of income distribution as compared to children of the rich with over 10% chance (Hertz 4). The other factor is labor market discrimination. This occurs as workers who are of equal productive measures are treated unequally in the economic sense (Kearney 46). This may arise in relation to gender, race, or ethnicity. In America, such type of racial discrimination still exists. This occurs through the prejudice of some members of the majority group’s against members of the minority group. Consequently, some of the group may gain promotion and thus earn more in comparison to the other group. Kearney notes, “The transmission of income level from parents to children among blacks differs distinctly from among the whites” (37). He also notes that the average income is lower among blacks than whites are (Kearney 37). Consequently, the upward mobility is lower among blacks as compared to whites due to lower average income. In addition, the minority groups are also less likely to be hired based on the negative perception. This leads to such member of the minority g ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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