Economic Gains from Educational Transfers in Kind in Germany


  • Joachim R. Frick SOEP / DIW Berlin
  • Markus M. Grabka SOEP / DIW Berlin
  • Olaf Groh-Samberg SOEP / DIW Berlin


The aim of this paper is to estimate non-monetary income advantages arising from publicly provided education and to analyze their impact on the income distribution and on economic inequality in Germany. Using representative micro-data from the German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) and taking into consideration regional and education-specific variation, the overall result is an expected leveling effect from a simple cross-sectional perspective. However, approximating the accumulating effects over the life course within a regression framework -- and controlling for selectivity arising from having children as potential beneficiaries of educational transfers -- we find evidence of a reinforcement of social inequalities from an intergenerational perspective, especially through public funding to non-compulsory education.