Income and Social Mobility

It is ESOP’s ambition to understand the linkages between economic performance, distribution, and social disparities. What are the costs and benefits of more equality?


Over the last 30 years, social equality and worker security have persisted in the Nordic countries and economic growth has been on par with the US. In the US, rising inequality has gone hand in hand with social cleavages and lower welfare. In contrast, most of Europe has experienced only a modest rise in inequality, but a sharp rise in unemployment. The Nordic countries, however, have in the same period combined social equality with good macroeconomic performance and full employment. To study the role of inequality, we must first derive what economic theory predicts for these societies. We can then confront the theoretical hypotheses with the observed patterns and draw valid conclusions.


Selected publications

Bratsberg, Bernt with Oddbjørn Raaum, Marianne Røed, and Pål Schøne (2014); “Immigration Wage Effects by Origin”, Scandinavian Journal of Economics.

Sørensen, Erik with Kai Liu and Kjell G. Salvanes (2014): “Bad times at a tender age - how education dampens the impact of graduating in a recession” , Nordic Economic Policy Review, 1, 2014.

Storesletten, Kjetil with Heathcote and Violante (2014): “Consumption and Labor Supply with Partial Insurance: An Analytical Framework”, American Economic Review, 104 (7):1-52.

Barth, Erling and Karl O. Moene (2013): “Why do Small Open Economies have such Small Wage Differentials?” Nordic Economic Policy Review, vol. 1, 139-170.

Berglann, Helge with Rolf Golombek and Knut Røed (2013): “Entreprenørskap i Norge – Mest for menn?” Søkelys på Arbeidslivet, Vol. 30, No. 1-2, 3-21.

Bjørn, Erik with Simen Gaure, Simen Markussen and Knut Røed (2013): “The Rise in Absenteeism - Disentangling the Impacts of Cohort, Age and Time”, Journal of Population Economics, Vol. 26 (2013), No. 4, 1585-1608.

Bratsberg, Bernt with Elisabeth Fevang and Knut Røed (2013): “Job Loss and Disability Insurance”, Labour Economics, Vol. 24, 137–150. 

Fernandez, Raquel (2013): "Culture as Learning: The Evolution of Female Labor Force Participation over a Century", AER, 103 (1), p.472-500.

Rege, Mari with Nina Eirin Drange (2013); “Trapped at Home: The Effect of Mother’s Temporary Labor Market Exits on their Subsequent Work Career”, Labour Economics, 125-136.

Storesletten, Kjetil (2013); “Politisk-økonomisk teori om offentlig gjeld”, Samfunnsøkonomen 127(5), 2013, pages 51-52.

Aaberge, Rolf and Ugo Colombino (2013): “Using a Microeconometric Model of Household Labour Supply to Design Optimal Income Taxes”, Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Scandinavian Journal of Economics 115, 449-475.

Barth, E., B. Bratsberg,  and  O. Raaum, (2012): "Immigrant Wage Profiles Within and Between Establishments". In Labour Economics 19 (4), pages 541-566.

Holden, Steinar (2012): "Comment on the cyclical behavior of equilibrium unemployment and vacancies". In Frankel, Jeffrey A. and Pissarides, Christopher A. (eds.) International seminar on Macroeconomics 2011, The University of Chicago Press, pages 241-247.

Leuven, Edwin, Booij, Adam S. and Oosterbeek, Hessel (2012): "The role of information in the take-up of student loans". In Economics of Education Review 31 (1), pages 33-44.

Mogstad, Magne, Wiswall, M. and Løken, K. (2012): "What Linear Estimators Miss: The Effects of Family Income on Child Outcomes". In American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, 4(2): 1-35.

Ray, Debraj and Mookherjee, D. and Prina, S. (2012): "A Theory of Endogenous Fertility with Occupational Choice". In American Economic Journal 4 (4), pages 1-34.

Ray, Debraj and Robson, A. (2012): "Status, Intertemporal Choice and Risk-Taking". In Econometrica 80, pages 1505-1531.

Schøne, Pål and Erling Barth (2012): "Best på skolen. Best på jobben?". In Samfunnsøkonomen 126, pages 14-25.

Strøm, Marte (2012): "Foreldres arbeidstilbud", in Samfunnsøkonomen 8.

Aaberge, Rolf and Colombino, U. (2012): "Accounting for Family Background when Designing Optimal Income Taxes: A Microeconometric Simulation Analysis", Journal of Population Economics 25, pages 741 – 761.

Aaberge, Rolf and M. Bhuller (2012): "Utviklingen av arbeidstilbudet i Norge", Økonomiske analyser 5, Statistics Norway.

Aaberge, R. and M. Bhuller (2012): "Arbeidstilbud blant innvandrere – Effektivitets- og fordelingsvirkninger av skattereformer". In Rapporter 30, Statistics Norway.

Almås, Ingvild, Alexander W. Cappelen, Jo Thori Lind, Erik Ø. Sørensen and Bertil Tungodden (2011) "Measuring Unfair (In)equality", Journal of Public Economics Vol. 95 No. 7-8, pages 488-499

Almås, Ingvild, Havnes, Tarjei, and Mogstad, Magne (2011): “Baby booming inequality? Demographic change and earnings inequality in Norway, 1967–2000.” In Journal of Economic Inequality  9 (4), 2011, pages 629-650.

Barth, Erling, with Dale-Olsen, Harald (2011): “Employer Size or Skill Group Size Effect on Wages?” In Industrial and Labor Relations Review 64 (2), pages 341–355.

Barth, Erling, Bratsberg, Bernt, and Raaum, Oddbjørn with Hægeland, Torbjørn (2011): “Performance Pay, Union Bargaining and within-firm Wage Inequality.” In Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, online first, 2011.

Holden, Steinar and Åsa Rosén (2011) "Discrimination and Employment Protection", working paper.

Kravdal, Øystein with Elstad, Jon Ivar, Torstensrud, Rita, and Lyngstad, Torkild Hovde (2011):  “Trends in educational inequalities in mortality, seven types of cancers, Norway 1971–2002.” In European Journal of Public Health online first, 2011.

Kravdal, Øystein with Shkolnikov, Vladimir M, Andreev, Evgueni M, Jdanov, Dmitri A, Jasilionis, Domantas, Vågerö, Denny, and Valkonen, Tapani (2011): “Increasing absolute mortality disparities by education in Finland, Norway and Sweden, 1971–2000.” In Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health online first, 2011.

Kravdal, Øystein with Kodzi, Ivy (2011): “Children’s stunting in sub-Saharan Africa: Is there an externality effect of high fertility?” In Demographic Research 25 (18), 2011, pages 565 - 594.

Kravdal, Øystein with Syse, Astri and Lyngstad, Torkild Hovde (2011): ” Is mortality after childhood cancer dependent on social or economic resources of parents? A population-based study.” International Journal of Cancer online first, 2011.

Moen, Espen and Rosén, Åsa (2011): “Incentives in Competitive Search Equilibrium.” In Review of Economic Studies 78 (2), pages 733-761.

Moen, Espen and Røed, Knut with Berglann, Helge, and Skogstrøm, Jens Fredrik (2011): “Entrepreneurship: Origins and Returns.” In Labour Economics  18 (2), 2011, pages 180-193.

Aaberge, Rolf and Mogstad, Magne with Peragine, Vitorocco (2011): “Measuring Long-Term Inequality of Opportunity.” In Journal of Public Economics 95 (3-4), pages 193-204.

Aaberge, Rolf and Mogstad, Magne (2011): “Robust Inequality Comparisons.” In Journal of Economic Inequality 9 (3), pages 353-371.

Heathcote, Jonathan, Kjetil Storesletten and Giovanni L. Violante (2010) "The Macroeconomic Implication of Rising Wage Inequality in the United States", Journal of Political Economy Vol. 118 No. 4, pages 681-722.

Barth, Erling and Harald Dale-Olsen (2009) "Monopsonistic Discrimination, Worker Turnover and the Gender Wage Gap", Labour Economics Vol. 16 No. 5, pages 589-597.

Fiva, Jon and Lars Kirkebøen (2008) "Does the Housing Market React to New Information on School Quality?", CESifo Working Paper No. 2299




Published Jan. 20, 2012 2:56 PM - Last modified Jan. 15, 2016 8:32 AM