HuCIAW: Human capital and inequality during adolescence and working life

In this project, we will investigate the role of human capital in shaping inequalities over the life course in three quite different country contexts. We aim to shed new light on the process of human capital formation during adolescence and adulthood. Our research plan addresses directly the theme of the call by relating different dimensions of inequality (on education opportunities and outcomes, human capital, employment and earnings), how they relate to individual circumstances (such as socio-economic background, gender and family arrangements), how they develop over the life course and how they are influenced by the education and welfare systems.

Our research will be organised under three inter-related themes, spanning themes 2-3 and branching to theme 1 of the DIAL programme: sorting of young people across education pathways; interactions between different investments in human capital; and, the insurance role of human capital. We will study these questions across three European countries representative of three distinct policy paradigms: the UK (with a comparatively low employment protection and low social insurance), France (respectively high, high) and Norway (low, high). The differences in the extent of inequality and policy context across the three countries will enable rich cross country comparisons.

The research team will be led by Professor Sir Richard Blundell from the IFS, with Professor Kjell Salvanes from NHH leading the Norway team and Professor Eric Maurin from PSE leading the France team. The significant and varied experience of the project leads and wider research team will allow us to producing academic papers that will be submitted to the top tier of economics journals and achieve significant impact on public policy.

Research team

Prof. Sir R. Blundell
Institute for Fiscal Studies

Prof. A. Vignoles
University of Cambridge

Prof. K.G. Salvanes
Norwegian School of Economics

Prof. E. Maurin
Paris School of Economics