A Comparative Analysis of the Transmission of Socio-Economic Inequalities
Edited by Fabrizio Bernardi and Gabrielle Ballarino
Chapter 6: Social background and education in occupational attainment in Italy
This chapter addresses the four research issues presented in the Introduction to this book, in regard to Italy. Unlike its north-western neighbours, Italy was a latecomer to industrialization (Banfield 1958; Putnam 1993), and it is still debated whether Italian society can be classified as fully modernized (Barbagli 1982; Cobalti and Schizzerotto 1994; Schizzerotto and Cobalti 1998; Martinelli et al. 1999). Hence, studying Italian social stratification from the point of view of modernization theories and their critiques might be particularly interesting. Moreover, given that previous research, as reviewed by Ballarino et al. (2014), did not give a consistent answer to the question of the degree of modernization of the Italian society, this chapter provides new evidence to both the specific discussion on the Italian case and the more general debate on socio-economic modernization. First, we study the direct ‘effect’ of social background on occupational achievement (intergenerational occupational correlation), controlling for education. Second, we test whether this effect changes over time as postulated by modernization theories.
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