Educational Determination in Brazil and Its Effect on Inequality Transmission

Christopher E. Dunn, University of Michigan

Education is by far the most important factor in the transmission of inequality in Brazil. Significant resources have been devoted to improving education for all Brazilians, yet the the effect of these policies on the transmission of inequality has not been fully examined. This paper sets out to accomplish three objectives for the population of Brazil. It documents the intergenerational correlation of education. It describes the extent to which the opportunity for educational attainment is limited by socio-economic status. It distinguishes the roles of enrollment probability and rate of grade progression in the determination of inequality in educational attainment. The data come from the 1976 through 1999 PNAD household surveys. The national-representativeness of this survey allows for unbiased estimates of the intergenerational correlation of education, and the large sample size allows for the flexible semi-parametric estimation of the effects of parental education and family income on educational attainment of 15-year-olds.

Presented in Session 125: Inequality and Education in Developing Countries