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Occupational mobility during South Africa's industrial take-off

Cilliers, Jeanne LU and Fourie, Johan (2017) In South African Journal of Economics
Abstract
In the absence of historical income or education data, the change in occupations over time can be used as a measure of mobility. This paper investigates intergenerational occupational mobility using a novel genealogical dataset for settler South Africa, spanning its transition from an agricultural to an early industrialised society (1800-1909). We identify fathers and sons for whom we have complete information on occupational attainment. We follow a two-generation discrete approach to measure changes in both absolute and relative mobility over time. Consistent with qualitative evidence of a shift away from agriculture as the economy’s dominant sector, we see the farming class shrinking and the skilled and professional classes growing.... (More)
In the absence of historical income or education data, the change in occupations over time can be used as a measure of mobility. This paper investigates intergenerational occupational mobility using a novel genealogical dataset for settler South Africa, spanning its transition from an agricultural to an early industrialised society (1800-1909). We identify fathers and sons for whom we have complete information on occupational attainment. We follow a two-generation discrete approach to measure changes in both absolute and relative mobility over time. Consistent with qualitative evidence of a shift away from agriculture as the economy’s dominant sector, we see the farming class shrinking and the skilled and professional classes growing. Controlling for changes in the structure of the labour market over time, we find increasing mobility, becoming significant after the discovery of minerals in 1868. We find this mobility particularly for semiskilled workers but virtually no improved mobility for sons of farmers. We also test hypotheses related to the mobility prospects for first-born sons and sons of immigrants. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
epub
subject
keywords
intergenerational mobility, occupational mobility, resource curse, industrialisation, colonialism, J60, J61, J62, N30, N37
in
South African Journal of Economics
pages
20 pages
publisher
Economic Soc South Africa
ISSN
0038-2280
DOI
10.1111/saje.12177
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
1ecd9e03-4633-427a-8e1c-c7246c75ad23
date added to LUP
2017-11-14 12:55:39
date last changed
2017-11-14 13:46:25
@article{1ecd9e03-4633-427a-8e1c-c7246c75ad23,
  abstract     = {In the absence of historical income or education data, the change in occupations over time can be used as a measure of mobility. This paper investigates intergenerational occupational mobility using a novel genealogical dataset for settler South Africa, spanning its transition from an agricultural to an early industrialised society (1800-1909). We identify fathers and sons for whom we have complete information on occupational attainment. We follow a two-generation discrete approach to measure changes in both absolute and relative mobility over time. Consistent with qualitative evidence of a shift away from agriculture as the economy’s dominant sector, we see the farming class shrinking and the skilled and professional classes growing. Controlling for changes in the structure of the labour market over time, we find increasing mobility, becoming significant after the discovery of minerals in 1868. We find this mobility particularly for semiskilled workers but virtually no improved mobility for sons of farmers. We also test hypotheses related to the mobility prospects for first-born sons and sons of immigrants.},
  author       = {Cilliers, Jeanne and Fourie, Johan},
  issn         = {0038-2280},
  keyword      = {intergenerational mobility,occupational mobility,resource curse,industrialisation,colonialism,J60,J61,J62,N30,N37},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {20},
  publisher    = {Economic Soc South Africa},
  series       = {South African Journal of Economics},
  title        = {Occupational mobility during South Africa's industrial take-off},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/saje.12177},
  year         = {2017},
}