Dirk Witteveen

Dirk Witteveen
University of Oxford | OX · Nuffield College

Doctor of Philosophy

About

24
Publications
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325
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Introduction
I'm a postdoctoral research fellow at Nuffield College, University of Oxford. I recently defended my dissertation entitled 'The Trajectory from School to Work. A Study of Life Chances of School Leavers in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, and Sweden.' My interests are centered around questions of social stratification, in particular those existent in the educational system and the labor market. I aim to understand how social forces, such as economic recessions, affect the distribution of life chances among different social groups over longer periods of time. I also study the meritocratic power of higher education on intergenerational mobility.

Publications

Publications (24)
Article
Stratification researchers have reported that the relationship between family background and socio-economic outcomes drops to near zero for individuals who have a baccalaureate degree, leading one scholar to conclude that "This...provides a new answer to the old question about overcoming disadvantaged origins. A college degree can do it." We presen...
Article
Although right-wing nationalist Geert Wilders—party leader of the Party for Freedom in the Netherlands—did not receive the most votes in the 2017 parliamentary elections, it is questionable whether this result really marks a retreat of nationalist and xenophobic politics. In the months leading up the elections in March of 2017, polls had indicated...
Article
Studies relating the selectivity of colleges to the earnings of their graduates report inconsistent findings. Some find no effects; most report statistically significant but quite small earnings benefits from attending a more selective college; and a few studies report large effects. Analyzing two recent national longitudinal studies of college gra...
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Higher education in America is characterized by widespread access to college but low rates of completion, especially among undergraduates at less selective institutions. We analyze longitudinal transcript data to examine processes leading to graduation, using Hidden Markov modeling. We identify several latent states that are associated with pattern...
Article
This study examines the effects of undergraduate financing on subsequent advanced degree attainment in a context characterized by a shift away from traditional grant aid programs and toward widespread student loans. Using data from the National Survey of College Graduates, 2SLS Lewbel method regressions estimate the effects of having received under...
Article
Despite similar educational aspirations, black students persist in higher education at much lower rates than white undergraduates. This paper advances a theoretical explanation for the racial gap in persistence by examining whether the differential attrition in college reflects contrasting incentives for educational persistence. To account for the...
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Full-text available
Research suggests that structural change drives occupational mobility in high-income countries over time, but two partially competing theories explain how such change occurs. One suggests that younger cohorts replace older ones through higher education, and the second suggests that individuals adapt to structural change by switching from declining...
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Background: Contact tracing apps are considered useful means to monitor SARS-CoV-2 infections during the off-peak stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Their effectiveness is, however, dependent on the uptake of such COVID-19 apps.
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Drawing the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 data, a comprehensive treatment model indicates a strong positive influence of incarceration on premature death risk. Models adjust for numerous covariates of mortality, including demographics, family background, and a range of health and behavioral indicators measured during childhood, as well...
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Education is considered a key driver of intergenerational social mobility in the United States. However, the past several decades have witnessed a dramatic increase in the costs of college attendance, which puts political pressure on what the roles of government and families in education financing ought to be. In this study, we examine how individu...
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Increasingly, undergraduates take more than 4 years to complete a baccalaureate, a situation widely perceived as a waste of time and money, for students, their families, and taxpayers. We first identify several phenomena that result in a longer time to degree and document the frequency of such delays. Then, using nationally representative data from...
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Significance This study measures the impact of the COVID-19 lockdowns on workers’ economic hardship and mental health. In data representative of the active labor force, we document two interconnected layers of rapidly exacerbating inequalities. We find that occupational ranking is highly predictive of experiencing a range of instant economic hardsh...
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Existing research generally confirms a countercyclical education enrollment, whereby youths seek shelter in the educational system to avoid hardships in the labor market: the “discouraged worker” thesis. Alternatively, the “encouraged worker” thesis predicts that economic downturns steer individuals away from education because of higher opportunity...
Article
The COVID-19 pandemic led to a lockdown in European countries in the first half of 2020, including stay-at-home orders and closure of non-essential businesses. To mitigate the detrimental effects on the financial stress of employees and households, the UK government implemented a furlough scheme that temporarily secured earnings up to 80 percent of...
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The low number of baccalaureates in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) is often viewed as problematic for the US's economic competitiveness, leading scholars to search for explanations for STEM retention. Our analyses of the Beginning Postsecondary Students Longitudinal Study indicate that the notion of a so‐called “leaky STEM...
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Full-text available
Previous research has shown that the intergenerational transmission of advantage disappears once individuals obtain a bachelor’s degree. This is known as the equalization thesis: the ‘meritocratic power’ of a college degree. This paper revisits the question of origin-destination association among college graduates. We improve on earlier studies by...
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Numerous studies have investigated the consequences of vertical transfer on students’ higher education outcomes in comparison to “native 4-year students”—those who went straight from high school into a bachelor’s program. However, the long-term labor market outcomes for vertical transfer students are understudied. Using nationally-representative da...
Chapter
Research On Job Precarity And Job Instability Have Largely Neglected The Labor Market Trajectories In Which These Employment And Non-Employment Situations Are Experienced. This Study Addresses The Mechanisms Of Volatility And Precarity In Observed Work Histories Of Labor Market Entrants Using The National Longitudinal Survey Of Youth Of 1997. Sever...
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This study uses two waves of panel data to examine the labour market integration of children of Moroccan and Turkish immigrants in the Netherlands. The data show a persisting educational attainment gap in terms of high school completion and post-secondary attendance. The analyses of prime working-age respondents indicate substantial ethnic penaltie...

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