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Educational Homogamy and Assortative Mating Have Not Increased *

Change at Home, in the Labor Market, and On the Job

ISBN: 978-1-83909-933-5, eISBN: 978-1-83909-932-8

Publication date: 23 November 2020


Some economists have argued that assortative mating between men and women has increased over the last several decades. Sociologists have argued that educational homogamy has increased. The two are conceptually distinct but often confused. We clarify the relation between the two and, using both the Current Population Surveys and the decennial Censuses/American Community Survey, show that neither conclusion is correct. Both are sensitive to how educational categories are chosen. The former is based on the use of inappropriate statistical techniques.




We are grateful to Claudia Olivetti for many helpful conversations, to Aloysius Siow, Robert Pollak, the editors and referees for helpful comments, and to Yoram Weiss for his strong encouragement. The usual caveat applies.


Gihleb, R. and Lang, K. (2020), "Educational Homogamy and Assortative Mating Have Not Increased * ", Polachek, S.W. and Tatsiramos, K. (Ed.) Change at Home, in the Labor Market, and On the Job (Research in Labor Economics, Vol. 48), Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 1-26.



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