Intergenerational Income Mobility in Turkey

Orhan Torul (Boğaziçi University)


We examine the extent of intergenerational income mobility in Turkey and offer comparable intergenerational income elasticity estimates using the Turkish Statistical Institute’s Survey of Income and Living Conditions datasets and TS2SLS methodology. First, we document that the intergenerational earnings elasticity between fathers and sons is around one-half, indicating a similar level of mobility in the United States. Second, we report a considerably larger elasticity of one between fathers and daughters. We show that this result stems from the historically low labor force participation and self-selection of females into employment in Turkey. We demonstrate that the household income elasticity estimates for sons and daughters are accordingly similar, around four-fifths. Third, we show that descendants residing in Turkey’s more affluent regions are more likely to have experienced upward mobility. Fourth, we report a decline in intergenerational mobility for more recent birth cohorts, as seen in other countries. Fifth, we complement our regression analyses with alternative mobility measures such as the rank-rank slope and transition matrices. These measures indicate more pronounced intergenerational persistence at the two ends of the income distribution. Our robust findings align with the previous literature on Turkey’s intergenerational educational mobility.

Natuk Birkan Building, Murat Sertel Lounge
November 4, 2022 - 15:00