Gabriele Ballarino, Hans M.A. Schadee

Espansione dell'istruzione e diseguaglianza delle opportunità educative nell'Italia contemporanea

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The article analyses the relationship between class of origin and educational attainment over time in Italy. The key question is whether the overall educational expansion that has occurred in the country has also brought about a lessening in the inequality of educational opportunities by social class of origin. The analysis treats educational titles as ordered categories and models educational attainment by class of origins and cohort using cumulative logits (ordinal regression). Differences in educational attainment depend on the parameters locating the cumulative logistic distribution of educational titles for a class and a cohort and on the location of the "separators" between educational levels. This type of statistical model explicitly allows investigation of how differences among countries in the structure of the educational system and in the educational expansion affect inequality of educational opportunities. We consider cohorts born between 1920 and 1969, four educational titles and six social classes. Results show a decrease of inequality across cohorts: this is true for both the agricultural and the urban classes.

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